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What lies beyond the furthest reaches of memory?Last Exile
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Saturday, December 15 2012, 08:57AM

Life so far!

That's right, I haven't updated in over a year so a lot has happened and I'm not going to go into everything in detail. Here's a list of highlights that have happened since the last time I wrote anything, in order:

  • I graduated with a 9 (out of 10)! My work resulted in a thesis entitled Application-specific Custom Operations For A VLIW Soft-Core. Attaining the 9 was no easy task! Due to new regulations it was near impossible to get a grade higher than an 8 for your graduation work. Getting a 9 or higher involved doing new scientific work. On top of that, it had to be subject to extreme scrutiny by a lector who would also have to defend his decision for giving the higher grade. I am very happy for achieving this!
  • I spent a winter season in Austria (from December 2011 until April 2012) snowboarding and having incredible amounts of fun!
  • The metal plate in my shoulder has been surgically removed. However, due to a fall in Austria, one of the pins that held the plate in place broke off and still remains inside my collar bone to this day. The surgeon was unable to remove it (but ensured me that it wouldn't affect me at all).
  • When I got back from Austria I took 2 months off before applying for any job in order to get into the competitive side of Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition. I main Dhalsim and I am training hard for my attending EVO 2013.
  • After my time off, I applied for an R&D position and got the job! I love this job. :D
  • I went to several Street Fighter tournaments, but the most notable of them was DreamHack Winter 2012. At this event I got to play some of the best Street Fighter players on the planet, such as Infiltration, Laugh, Ryan Hart and Zhi! This event was amazing and I'm definitely going to go back next editions.
  • I bought a new gaming laptop (the XMG P722) from Schenker Notebooks for € 2300,- which houses the latest graphics card on the mobile market, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680M (and even has room for an SLI setup!). Other than that, it has the Intel i7-3740QM (quad core) processor, a 256 GB SSD and a 1 TB hard disk, 16 GB of main memory and a BluRay burner. With this notebook I should be future-proof for the next couple of years. :)
  • I bought a new phone: the Samsung Galaxy S III, which is pretty snazzy. I also bought a Nintendo 3DS in anticipation of Animal Crossing: New Leaf.
  • I met up with GuiltyByDesign (Ashley Frey) and ACJ (Alexander Christiaan Jacob Dekker) in Amsterdam! I've known them via the Mortal Kombat community for around 10 years and never thought we'd ever meet, but since Ashley was here for a trip around Europe this was the perfect opportunity to meet up. :)

There must have been other things I forgot to mention, maybe I'll post about them later.. maybe not. :)


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Saturday, February 12 2011, 04:25PM

Quit my job, started graduation period

Just wanted to write a quick entry to state I've quit my job at Liones.
It's been a lot of fun working there over the past three and a half years and I've gained a lot of experience in the process.
However, the time has come for me to start my graduation period and I won't have any free time left to work there.

I want to thank everyone at Liones (even colleagues I've worked with that have left the company) for their support, advice and kindness over the years.

As for my graduation project, I'm working for dr. ir. Stephan Wong under supervision by Fakhar Anjam (PhD student) from the TU Delft on a VLIW microprocessor (built by a MSc student) named ρ-VEX (see also: ρ-VEX project at Google Code).
More specifically, I'll be working on laying the foundation to a more dynamic approach to custom instructions (currently, architecture for custom instructions is already implemented, but requires too much manual work).


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Friday, December 31 2010, 12:54PM

Happy New Year!

This year has been a very busy one for me, however I seem to have made it until the end!

2010 has been the year of…

  • …some serious snowboarding progression, starting from the backflip/frontflip, learning the backside and frontside Rodeo (after seeing Marko Grilc perform them on the Winter X-Games Europe) and some other tricks that I've not landed yet (to be continued!).
  • …buying the most perfect snowboard that suits me perfectly: the K2 Parkstar (2010/2011 model after having sent the 2009/2010 model back under warranty because of construction errors).
  • …ending the university bridging program unsuccessfully, only managing to pass two (out of six) courses I attended (namely: Embedded Systems and Calculus 1), yet still having learned a lot.

That's all I could think of at the time of writing.  I've really been swamped with my education this year to do anything.

Thanks to everyone that's been awesome this year: happy new year and best wishes for 2011!


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Monday, December 20 2010, 12:23PM

Lots of snow fall, lots of fun!

Over the weekend there has been a lot of snow fall in The Netherlands leading to lots of aggravation to this country's inhabitants, unsettled by the presence of snow.
However, to a snowboarder like myself, this has only resulted in feeding my desire to shred!

With my default snowboard wing man Mick doing time in the outskirts of Suriname (where he's doing his internship :P) this left me with only Ed to appeal to.
Luckily, Ed found way into his busy schedule to join me!

As a result of last year's similar heavy snow fall, during the course of this entire year I've been scoping locations to go to when such heavy snow fall would once again present itself.
I found one spot in particular which looked absolutely perfect, the only problem was: I've only seen it from inside the train on my way to university or work, so I didn't know if it would be as perfect up close as it looked.
Thankfully, Ed was able to drive us there to have a closer look.

Picture of the rail I've been scoping
The rail I've been scoping for a year now.
Alternate view of the rail
Alternate view of the rail.

We decided it was worth giving it a go, me being as eager as anyone to try anything (and taking on the associated risks :P), so we built a kicker covering the first few steps to be able to jump onto the rail.

The kicker we built for the rail (bottom view)
The kicker we built for the rail (bottom view).
The kicker we built for the rail (top view)
The kicker we built for the rail (top view).
The kicker we built for the rail (run-in view)
The kicker we built for the rail (top run-in view).

The kicker took an hour to build and shape and ended up nicely, it was certainly a good experience (scoping/building wise — this is the first time either of us had ever done this).
There was only one problem though: my experience with rails, or rather the lack thereof.
I ended up bailing on almost every try.. oh well. :P

After that rail we decided to drive around Rotterdam some more to find other things to do, and boy did we ever!

We noticed the Erasmusbrug (most famous bridge in Rotterdam) was covered in snow and we were thinking of how cool it would be (novelty-wise included) to try and ride down on its sidewalk.
Ed parked the car near the bridge, we walked up, strapped on, and rode it down! :D

Me strapped into my snowboard on the Erasmusbrug, Rotterdam
Snowboarding on the Erasmusbrug in downtown Rotterdam? Hell yeah!

On the way down we noticed there was a small restaurant with a slanted roof so we climbed up on its roof and rode down, jumping off it, which was kind of fun as well. :P

Then, on our way back home, we stopped at an abandoned business park to attempt the cour de gras of great ideas: Ed brought along several ropes which he tied together and attached to the car, I then strapped into my board and Ed started driving while I hung on! :D
This is an absolute awesome thing to do if you don't mind the associated risks! :D:D
An added bonus was that one building was actually not abandoned (on a Monday morning at 2:30 AM.. go figure). :o
A couple of employees took notice of us as we were setting up and kind of stood there in disbelief as Ed started to accelerate whilst I was hanging on riding my board.
We saw them laughing and talking about us after we drove by the building again (we did 3 or 4 laps around the block). :D

Ah.. I love snow. :)


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Sunday, May 30 2010, 10:43AM

Snowboarding montage

Last week I went snowboarding again and invited Ed along so he could film and photograph me with his cameras.

It turned out to be difficult to photograph me with the given lighting, but the video parts turned out nicely.
From the different videos, he then pieced together this montage:

It consists mostly of rodeos because that's the trick I'm still perfecting at the moment.
Also, for the occasion, I did a rodeo for the first time on the 45ft kicker. :D

Thanks again for taking the time to film me and for creating the video, Ed!


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Friday, May 14 2010, 07:30AM

Rodeo on film!

Well, it took a while but I finally have a backside rodeo 540 on film!

Last time I was filmed with my phone, the OS (Symbian) ate the files and created a cool 1.8 GB empty file.

At any rate, the rodeos I'm doing (like the one on film) still need some work to get them dialed in perfectly but that'll certainly come with time. :)


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Tuesday, April 13 2010, 04:33PM

Rodeos and Frontflips!

Today, I finally managed to land my first few rodeos and frontflips!

No long story this time, just this quick update. :D


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Friday, April 9 2010, 10:02AM


Just a quick addition to my previous entry: little over a week ago, I've done my first few backflips on an actual "kicker"!

It took me 30 straight airs to muster up the courage to throw it and the first time I fell on my back because I didn't commit (I bought a back protector to attempt inverts, so I was fine).
After that first fall, I knew what it'd take to make it around so I went right up and did it again without hesitation and stomped it!

After that first successful backflip I've done it consecutively for 7 or 8 times without ever falling, so I've pretty much got this one in the bag. :)

Also: backflips are easy, I know that, but it's sort of a gateway to other inverted tricks so it feels good to have this down. :)

Oh, and thanks to Pepijn for witnessing/filming the event. :D


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Friday, March 19 2010, 10:57AM

Not dead yet!

The past few months I've been very busy with various things and have neglected my weblog as a result, so I thought I'd make a short entry about passed events.

  • I went snowboarding in Austria twice this season: once in December (spent 2 weeks there with Mick) and once in February (spent a week there with Mick and my younger brother — his first wintersports vacation!).  This season's been a lot of fun paired with a lot of progression for me!: I rode the first two kickers of the pro line in the Vans Penken Park (the two kickers were, respectively: 15 meters/50 feet and 17 meters/56 feet), learned a couple of new tricks and recently learned to do backflips and Backside Rodeo's (landing on an airbag since this was in-doors — when the larger kicker is built I plan on doing them on there as well).
    There's actually a funny story here as well: when I was learning to do Rodeo's in Snow World there was a technician working who I didn't really notice, until he came up to me and explained that they were installing a new video system which is going to offered by Snow World to the masses.  He explained to me how the system works and gave me a pass to test the system for them (I am the first rider to ever test this system!).  The way it works is: you swipe a pass over a sensor which will make the system start recording at various points along the in-door piste (with the airbag directly under the last camera at the bottom).  The video's look really good (but I can't publish the videos yet — I'm not really happy with the recorded runs I made anyway :P).  In future, people will be able to buy these passes as day passes, however, I'm able to use the pass they gave me indefinitely! :D  Only thing is; the airbag has been torn down and there really isn't anything to do at Snow World at the moment.. :(
    Anyway, I plan to spend the summer well this year, riding in-doors a lot with my wing-man Mick and my younger brother. :D
  • I just bought a new snowboard: the K2 Parkstar (2010 model, size: 152)! :D:D
  • I started taking classes at the university as part of my education at the Hogeschool but the tests were really hard for me (only managing to pass 1 of the 8 tests I had to take!).  Since I've spent a full semester there, I've taken most all the classes I needed to take so instead of waiting for the new tests to become available I decided to go back to the Hogeschool and start taking the classes there again (so that I don't fall back on the required classes there).  this is all hard to explain, so I'm leaving it at this description of the situation for now (I haven't given up yet!  however, it's beginning to look like university might be a bit too much to take for me..).
  • Pepijn (classmate at the uni) gave me his soldering iron so that I was able to gain some experience.  I picked up on doing through-hole soldering really quickly and have since soldered on the GPIO ports for the DSerial Edge I've had lying around here.  I've also figured out how a specific seven-segment display I had lying around worked (it's mounted on a weird bridge of some kind to be used as a module) by way of testing for connections (using a multimeter).  After doing that, I took a shitload of wires from several computer components and hooked it up to the DSerial Edge to be able to use it.  I've uploaded a video of the finished project to YouTube. :)  I'm happy with the end result; it's the first thing I've used the DSerial Edge for ever since I bought it. :P  Thanks again for the help, Pepijn!

That's it for now: I can't really think about anything other than snowboarding. :x


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Wednesday, September 30 2009, 03:19PM


Last week on Tuesday I decided to go snowboarding with a guy from the university I had gotten to know; Tom, who had told me he was a snowboard instructor himself, so I thought that might be fun.
We went to SnowWorld, where I've been many times in the past.
At around 10:00 PM I was really wearing myself out and getting tired but I didn't plan on going any time soon, which turned out to be something I'd come to regret..

I went up the slope (slope 3 no less, which has no obstacles on it whatsoever, just a plain long slope) and decided to practice some backside 360s on the flats (never did those on the flats before even though I can do them on a jump since a few weeks).
The first one went perfectly, which pleased me, but then when I tried to do it again, overconfident as I was, I came down hard on my side with my elbow between me and the surface of the slope, and really hurt my side!
At first I just laid there on the slope having difficulty breathing (which I've had experienced in the past, even to the point of nausea) but then the pain set in hard.
Tom came up to me talking me through it (breathing patterns and all) but the pain just didn't go away and breathing was still very difficult.
I decided it would be best to just move to the side of the slope instead of lying in the middle of it and try to shake it off there (as I didn't want to alarm anyone at the time), so I stood up and snowboarded the last few meters down and to the side.

After having been lying down for a good 20 minutes or so, it just didn't seem to get any better and I told Tom I'd want to go outside to sit there, and it would maybe also be a good time for us to leave for home.
So I got up and I tried walking toward the exit of the slope but every step I took just hurt a lot!
Having walked for only around 10 meters I came to realize that this wasn't just going to disappear and I wasn't physically able to continue on walking, so I told Tom I'd have to stop.
I sat down on a bench which was nearby and Tom rushed to get an in-house medic to take a look at me.
A guy from SnowWorld itself arrived and analyzed me by asking some generic questions but, him not being a doctor, he told me it would be best to just go to the emergency room at the hospital and gave us directions on how to get there (Tom was able to drive me).

Upon arriving at the hospital, I walked up a few painful steps to the counter where it was requested I should urgently be gotten a wheelchair.
I tried to calm down the desk employee by saying I'd walked for a while and it would be okay, walking would be fine (it had also seemed that standing hurt the least whereas it hurt a lot whenever I sat or lied down), but she would have none of it and expressly told that it wasn't a request, so I sat down and was driven to an examination room.
I explained what happened and how much my side hurt and I was given an intramuscular injection to ease the pain (which I was later told was Morphine — which really surprised me because I'd sooner associate that with much more severe injuries).
After a long time, it was becoming more and more apparent that I wasn't going to be leaving the hospital that night and that was exactly what I was eventually told (after having done an Xray and was told that it wasn't a fracture), so I was driven to an observation room (IV and all) at which point I said goodbye to Tom.

By this time, it was around 1:30 AM, and I was told to get some sleep and I'd be under observation for the night and to let them know if anything was off.
Sleeping, however, almost seemed impossible!
Lying down hurt like hell; I just wasn't able to breathe!  Just sitting in my bed hurt (the only way I didn't experience much pain was sitting straight up on the side of my bed).
I hyperventilated a few times, gasping for air, but was calmed by a nurse who told me to focus on my breathing and try to calm that down, which helped; about an hour into this tormention, I was able to find some rest (I would be repeatedly awoken that night for blood samples and a blood pressure test).

Morning came, and a doctor came to me to tell me that I experienced blunt trauma to my abdomen, spoke of something called "kidney concussion" and said I was going to have an ultrasound and a CT scan to have a better view of my abdomen.
The ultrasound revealed internal bleeding and it was not clear where it came from or if it had stopped, which concerned me (causing me to hyperventilate — this is really annoying when you can't take deep breaths and every gasp for air hurts like hell).
After that it was off for the CT scan, which also required quite some effort on my part: lying down (which hurt), moving my arms above my head (which hurt), holding still (which hurt) and taking deep breaths (which hurt even more).
Needless to say, that took a lot of time to do.

After all that was set and done, I returned to the observation room and I just had to wait for the results to come in.
My brother came by to see me during that time (I had, the night before, called my mom to let her know what was up and she had since told my brother who immediately left his work to stop by and see me).
At this point, I was hoping to get the results back and be able to go home (as I didn't want to miss classes at the university and work) but when the doctor came in with the results, it was going to become clear to me that this was far from being over.

The doctor came to me with the results and told me that I've had impact trauma to my spleen and it was ruptured!
He told me in a dead serious tone that I wasn't going to be going home for quite some time!
The standard procedure is to keep a patient under close observation to see if the rupture resolves itself; if it does, I won't require surgery but if it doesn't, well, out goes the spleen. :P

To conclude an already long story (I didn't plan on writing this much to be honest, heh): I ended up spending a week there bound to strict bed rest, my spleen ended up healing itself shut to stop the bleeding and I am now under way to recovery.
A full recovery will take up to 6 weeks, during which time I will be unable to do any physical exertion (which includes bicycling, at least for the first weeks, which sucks) and I will have to be very careful (walk slowly, take my time going up and down stairs, etc).

Urgh.. what a week.

One final note to end this entry: thanks a lot to my friends and university classmates who came to visit me at the hospital! :)


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Saturday, September 5 2009, 02:02PM

Happy 23rd birthday to me!

Today marks my 23rd birthday!
Hurray! :D


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Saturday, September 5 2009, 02:01PM

Pokemon Mini Backlight!!!

Ever since I saw a Pokemon Mini with a backlight I've really wanted it on mine as well.
Lupin^ posted the steps to build it yourself on the forum of the Pokeme website but there was a problem with it: the required parts can no longer be found anywhere (most notably the tiny inverter).

I though I was never going to see mine with a backlight until I asked Lupin^ directly if he happened to still have any parts left to build one, to which he replied that he did have one complete set left!
After hearing that, I asked him if he could build it into my Pokemon Mini if I sent it to him and, well, long story short: he did!

A picture of my new backlit Pokemon Mini
A picture of my new backlit Pokemon Mini (next to a normal one for comparison)!

I got it back yesterday after spending some time traveling up and down from The Netherlands to Germany and back but it was well worth the wait!
Not only did he build in the backlight into the unit at super speed, but he also cleaned the encasing/buttons and replaced the screen cover (because it had some scratches on it)!

Thanks a lot, Lupin^!


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Saturday, September 5 2009, 01:43PM

Summer time

This summer, I've devoted practically all my free time on two things: work and snowboarding!

SnowWorld (in-doors ski/snowboarding facility) offers various kinds of membership subscriptions, lasting from anywhere between a month to a year.
They also offer one specific membership subscription which lasts for the entire months of July and August and costs only 100 Euros (normally it'll cost 25 EUR to snowboard for 4 hours).
Needless to say, I bought that option! :P

I gained a lot of new skills on the park from all that boarding, I could already do frontside 180s and several grabs (indy, method, mindy, nose/tail grabs, etc) but new things I can now do are: frontside 360, backside 180, backside half-cab (which is a frontside 180 but you pop it riding in switch — it's backwards due to the fact it's a trick which is normally performed in a half-pipe).
Especially the backside 180 took me the longest time to be able to do, because I was scared to throw my board blind-sided (in fact, I was able to do the frontside 360 before I could do the backside 180 :P).

Aside from those trick I went to several placed to snowboard, including Snow Planet, which had a seemingly nice park (from pictures) but was actually not all that fantastic.
It did, however, have a HUGE jump which is the largest one I've done to date!
So far, there hasn't been a single jump I didn't dare to take! :D

I've also bought a new snowboard tailored specifically for the park: the K2 WWW, 2009 model.
It cost me only 190 Euro's because it was the 2009 model. :P
(I was actually considering getting the K2 Parkstar, 2010 model, which comes with the new Jib Rocker technology, but I decided I could always buy it later. :))


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Tuesday, July 21 2009, 12:08PM

Bought a 1 Terabyte hard disk!

It seems like such a long time ago since 1 terabyte hard disks were first announced and I remember being amazed over such an amount of storage space.
However, today I've actually bought my own 1 terabyte hard disk! :o

I bought the Samsung SpinPoint F1 (HD103UJ), to be exact, and it functions beautifully!
The price I bought it for was only €79,95!


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Monday, July 20 2009, 11:10AM

Passed admission exam for Delft University of Technology!

After having invested a lot of time and effort into the admission exam for the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), I finally managed to pass it!

The way the Dutch education system works is hard to explain, so I won't do that here now, but it can at least be said that in two years time (after I've finished my education at the Hogeschool) I will be able to start my masters study there. :D
Most likely, it will be the study Computer Engineering, which appeals to me the most. :)


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Monday, July 20 2009, 10:56AM

Freecom MusicPal

Around Christmas, I received a Freecom MusicPal as a gift from my job.

Having some fun with it I found an admin panel in the web interface where there was an option to turn on a Telnet daemon, this (after logging in) confirmed my assumption that this thing ran Linux.
I found the SDK and Toolchain on the official site and e-mailed all my findings to the rest of my co-workers.

At that time, my boss jokingly asked me about when to expect Pong for it, so.. I made him a Pong game for it (I made a movie and uploaded it to YouTube) :P:

The game mechanics work well with the knob wheels. :)

I also decided to publish the source and binary: see files/mppong/ for all the files.


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