Monday, 17 August 2015

Event: My ASIALEX Talk & One-ish Months Before PhD Confirmation



Photo by Dr.Vincent Ooi

My apologies for writing a little too much of Tesla and EV-related posts these days, but being my most concerned topic recently apart from writing my PhD confirmation report (which is boring to talk about), I just cannot resist the temptation.

On the 25-27 June, ASIALEX 2015 held at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, I presented the same research as I did at CAES Faces of English at the Hong Kong University, but unlike the last time when there were only less than 10 people attended (including 2 seminar helpers), this time I almost get a full house! Let's just say there were at least 25. I'll say most of the audience actually knew that House M.D. is a TV drama, and a number of them are even fans of Dr. House. What's more, they know corpus linguistics way better than audience at CAES. Still, I took precautions and played the videos first.


The next video is the best there is out there but since embedding is disabled, please click on the link below to watch it https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLxsNTC5KGk

Photo by Dr.Vincent Ooi
I consider my talk was a success, in a way that my audience looked to have enjoyed it, there were a number of questions asked from the floor, and most importantly, I have got to know some fabulous people in those 3 days, including Dr. Vincent Ooi from The National University of Singapore who took these two great photos of me. It is very good when I didn't have to take photos of myself to prove my presence. 

And yes, this time round I got to be on the official photos! In fact, I am the person who managed to appear the most in the photo album, a total of 7 times!!!! Here they are below:

Where's Locky?
Image from ASIALEX
Okay, here's a larger one of me
Image from ASIALEX
That's my back
Image from ASIALEX

Larger head by cropped out
Image from ASIALEX
Full head but blurred
Image from ASIALEX

Can you tell this is me?
Image from ASIALEX
Finally a clear, recognisable photo of me my back
Image from ASIALEX
In summary, the back of my head must be really good-looking, much more good-looking than my face. Oh~~~ boy!

Well, at least I got this to cheer about


I'm very glad to know that my paper has been included in the conference proceedings!!! My first formal publication apart from those on my blog @ ASIALEX 2015 #ASIALEX #ASIALEX2015
Posted by Locky's English Playground on Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Resources:

Message: Three Months Before PhD Confirmation & My CAES Talk @Locky's English Playground

All 3 House M.D openers/themes/intros (American, Singaporean and European) +YouTube 

House MD - The Funny Moments Compilation +YouTube 

ASIALEX 2015 Photo Album

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Auto & Message: Tesla's Owner Referral Program Saves You HK$10,000 And More!!!


Modified from Official Tesla's website screen capture


While some analysts are saying that Tesla is burning cash and that it is losing US$4,000 on every Model S sold, Tesla certainly don't think so. Evidence shows that Elon Musk wants to sell even more Model S! And that's why he sent out this email about Tesla's Referral Program to all existing Tesla Model S owners, including myself:

Subject: Trying something new (plus party at the Gigafactory and a Founder Series Model X)
Word of mouth has always been a major part of how Tesla sales have grown. When I meet Tesla owners, one of the first things they often tell me is how they have convinced many others to buy the car.
As you may already know, Tesla does not advertise or pay for endorsements or product placement. Maybe by doing so we could sell more cars, but I don’t like the idea of trying to trick people into buying a product by false association. If you see somebody famous driving a Model S, it is because they genuinely like the car. If you see it in a movie or TV show, it is because the people associated with that production genuinely like the car.  
Besides word of mouth, another way that our cars are sold is through stores. These will always be important to allow people to check out new models and ask our product specialists detailed questions. However, stores are quite expensive to set up and operate. In reviewing the Tesla cost of sales, we found that it is approximately $2,000 to sell a car through our stores, higher in some regions and lower in others.
Both ways of reaching potential customers are important, but, if we can amplify word of mouth, then we don’t need to open as many new stores in the future. So, we are going to try an experiment. This is similar to the customer growth program that I worked on at PayPal/X.com back in ’99. What worked for PayPal may not work for Tesla, but it is worth trying, as the net result would be lowering our costs by $2,000, allowing us to give that money to our customers.
From now through October 31st, if someone buys a new Model S through your link (XX include link XX), they will get $1,000 off the purchase price and you will get a $1,000 credit in your Tesla account, which can be applied to a future car purchase, service charge or accessories. To put some limits on the experiment, each Tesla owner can grant a maximum of ten $1,000 discounts.
Just for fun, there will also be some things that money can't buy. If five of your friends order a Model S, you and a guest will receive an invitation to tour the Gigafactory in Nevada – the world’s biggest factory by footprint – and attend the grand opening party. This will be awesome. At ten orders, you get the right to purchase a Founder Series Model X, which is not available to the public, with all options free (value of about $25,000). The first person to reach ten will get the entire car for free.

It didn't take long before Bjorn Nyland, Norway or perhaps the world’s most influential Tesla owner, won the first Model X for Europe from Elon. With all his cool Tesla Model S videos he has made over the years, everyone on this planet will agree that he truly deserves it! The competition is still on for North America and the Asia-Pacific though.

My car door's dent, since 1st Jan 2015, after challenging Lake Silver car park
Image from Locky's English Playground
As for me, I am not a greedy person, I do not want to own a Model X as I really cannot afford to rent another parking space to put it, but I do need to get some referral bonus to fix my car door's dent (since 1st Jan 2015, after challenging Lake Silver car park), and the best way to fix it is to have door replacement (this is what the renowned Dent Doctor at Kwan Tong recommends that I do), which costs HK$16,000.

Image from Locky's English Playground
To achieve this goal, I will need two referrals! Of course, no one can guarantee what will happen to anyone's car in the future, so the more referrals the safer. Then again, the bonus must be spent before 31 December 2016, so if there is any bonus money left, and I hope that will mean no further damage to my car, I will turn them into accessories then give them out as donations to charities in Hong Kong (choices of charity organisation are to be decided).

Tesla Online Shop
Image from Tesla Motors 

So please support me by sharing my referral code, here at http://ts.la/lokhei21 or share the image at the top of this page. Do take note that the referral code can only be used to purchase Model S in Hong Kong! So if you are from overseas, thank you for your support, you will need to find another referral code from your country. Still, you can share my code to your friends in Hong Kong!



Resources:
Locky's Tesla Model S referral code +Tesla Motors
http://ts.la/lokhei21

Tesla burning cash @CNBC Video
http://finance.yahoo.com/video/tesla-burning-cash-202500778.html

Tesla Said to Be Losing Over $4,000 on Every Model S Sedan Sold @The Street
http://www.thestreet.com/story/13250661/1/tesla-said-to-be-losing-over-4000-on-every-model-s-sedan-sold.html?puc=yahoo&cm_ven=YAHOO

Elon Musk says Tesla will pay you $1,000 to get someone else to buy a Tesla +Business Insider
http://www.businessinsider.com/elon-musk-says-tesla-will-pay-you-to-get-your-friends-to-buy-a-model-s-2015-7

First ‘Winner’ of Tesla’s Referral Program Confirmed by Musk Read more at @Teslarati
http://www.teslarati.com/bjorn-nyland-first-winner-tesla-referral-program/#aTd5d9tdhBAZubMl.99

Referral Program +Tesla Motors
http://www.teslamotors.com/en_HK/support/referral-program

Tesla Accessories and Charging Adapters — Accessories +Tesla Motors
http://shop.teslamotors.com/collections/accessories


Thursday, 30 July 2015

Auto & Opinions: Hong Kong's EV Development feat. The Issue of ICE Vehicles Occupying Charging Spots



Cyberport's "encouraging" poster to promote the use of charging spots for general parking
Image from Facebook

Two topics I want to talk about here today, one is Hong Kong's EV development, the other is the issue of Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) vehicles occupying charging spots.

Progress of EV in Hong Kong
Image from Locky's English Playground, data from Environmental Protection Department HK
First of all, it is amazing how the progress of EV in Hong Kong has changed in just about 12 months' time. From the graph above, we can see a steady yet steep increase in the number of EVs since July 2014. Much of this increase in EV number has to do with Tesla's amazing Model S which began their Hong Kong delivery since 23rd July 2014 as well as the First Registration Tax (FRT) waiver. Quoting from the Environmental Protection Department website,

"As at end of May 2015, there are 2246 EVs for road use, up from less than 100 in end 2010."

This translates to a jump of 22.46 folds in just 5 years, and 72.4% of this jump happened in less than a year. According to my rough estimation, assuming that non-Tesla EVs increase steadily at a rate of 20 per month, which is roughly the monthly increase of EVs before Model S had arrived in Hong Kong, there are about 1800 (= 2246 - 200-ish BMW i3 -20 x 10 months) Tesla Model S on the road at the end of May 2015. Adding that Hong Kong has now the highest density of Tesla superchargers in the world, that is 8 supercharging stations -- 36 stalls in total or 50 Model S per supercharger, together with what Elon Musk said at the Q4 conference in Feb 2015 that "Sales in Hong Kong are excellent", I would say my estimate is about right.


The source of electricity in Hong Kong has been extensively discussed in another one of my blog entries titled, Science & Environment : Do EVs Really Do More Harm Than Good? And if that isn't enough, here is a very nice video that adds knowledge,


 and some extra details from the CLP Power HK Online:

Image from CLP Online
Image from CLP Online

But with more and more EVs in Hong Kong, related problems begin to show. Not that there are problems with EVs themselves, but with those who are anti-EVs. Taken in May 2014 at Cyberport Hong Kong by a Tesla Model S owner, the following video has gained over 39,000 views on Facebook and near 4000 views on YouTube:


Image from Locky's English Playground


Occupying EV charging spots isn't unique to Hong Kong, but Hong Kong is probably one of the few places on Earth that does not penalise such a notorious act. There is no laws protecting EV charging spaces in Hong Kong, and so some ICE owners treat charging spaces like normal parking spaces where they park for hours, days or even weeks.
Hyundai H1 car plate RG 6366 occupies Tesla superchargers at Cyberport since 29th July 2015
Image from Sony Wong
In this particular incidence, Cyberport car park staff I have spoken to claims that there is nothing they can do mainly because

  1. There is no law regarding ICE occupying charging spaces, so RG 6366 has the right to do so.
  2. RG 6366 has paid for monthly-parking.
  3. Tesla paid half rent for their parking spaces, not full, and therefore they cannot take action on RG 6366.


Hyundai H1 car plate RG 6366 occupies Tesla superchargers at Cyberport since 29th July 2015
Image from Linus Van Pelt
If this is really the case and the Cyberport logic is right, then it means they can only sit and wait for the owner of RG 6366 to be willing to move away, and if this is a car the owner decides to abandon but is willing to pay for parking fee, it will be parked at the Cyberport superchargers forever!

EV supporters from around the world commenting on Cyberport Facebook page on their handling of RG 6366
Image from Cyberport Facebook page
News has spread fast through the internet and EV supporters from around the world are commenting on Cyberport's official Facebook page and there is no sign of stopping.

EV supporters from Denmark commenting on Cyberport Facebook page on their handling of RG 6366
Image from Cyberport Facebook page
However, according to the CAP 374C ROAD TRAFFIC (PARKING) REGULATIONS reg 19 Powers of attendants and CAP 374C ROAD TRAFFIC (PARKING) REGULATIONS reg 25 Offences in relation to car parks, car parks and their attendants have the absolute right to implement regulations to protect EV owners' right in using charging stations. Non-government car parks such as those of Hopewell, Time Square and Hong Kong Jockey Club, have put up signs and notices and taken actions against ICE vehicles occupying charging stations, even without taking a single cent from Tesla. It is therefore the choice of Cyberport car park management to enable anti-EVs' bullying, or to end this nonsense once and for all.

The big question is, car parks like Cyberport, will they ever do anything good for the EV community without any forms of monetary compensation?

A sign at a HKJC car park
Image from Raymond Choi
A group of us have created some printables for these charging station occupiers which is shown below and can be download here. Education is the best way to tackle such issue and this is as mild as it gets.

Image from TMC
Disclaimer, or something like that:

Locky Law
Tesla Motors Group Representative
Home
Hong Kong Electric Vehicle Association


************************Updated on 1st August 2015**********************************

Cyberport replied with great news!
Image from Locky's English Playground
This morning, I checked Facebook page and I was greeted with good news from fellow Model S owners. Cyberport has taken effort to respond to our comments and complaints with positive attitude. As shown in the image above,

"Therefore, effective 7 August 2015, any non-EV found occupying the EV charging space will be impounded without prior notice."

Cyberport responded positively to my blog entry and I also respond to them
Image from Locky's English Playground
My response to them was,

"We all know that "vehicle broken down" is an excuse by the owner, his action to park at the Tesla superchargers speaks for his intention. But still appreciate your work for the EV community and improvement in terms of car park regulation. Without stricter rules, anti-EVs will just kep repeating their occupying of EV charging stations. This is the right kind of attitude in responding to government's promotion of EV for cleaner air in Hong Kong."

But to be fair, I also wrote a reply and a formal official email to Cyberport as follows:


Dear Cyberport car park management

As the Tesla Owner Group Representative of Charged Hong Kong​, I would like to express my gratitude on behalf of the Hong Kong EV community to the Cyberport management for taking EV-owners' comments seriously and have promptly reacted to our requests! 

Your contributions to the EV community is deeply appreciated and will be remembered by EV-owners worldwide. You have set yet another good example for the rest of the car parks in Hong Kong which do not provide any sorts of protection for EV-charging rights. 

We hope that the said impoundment of non-EV vehicles at charging spots will be strictly implemented while at the same time consider expanding such impoundment on non-charging EVs occupying charging spots, like Time Square car park does for instance, because a non-charging EV blocking a charger is equally disturbing.

We look forward to further communication between us. Together, we can make Hong Kong a better and cleaner place for all.


Best regards
Locky Law
Tesla Motors Group Representative
9572-9200 | locky@charged.hk
Home
Hong Kong Electric Vehicle Association



Resources:
Promotion of Electric Vehicles in Hong Kong @Environmental Protection Department
http://www.epd.gov.hk/epd/english/environmentinhk/air/prob_solutions/promotion_ev.html

Science & Environment : Do EVs Really Do More Harm Than Good? @ Locky's English Playground
http://lockyep.blogspot.hk/2014/12/science-environment-do-evs-really-do.html

Progress of EV in Hong Kong +Tesla Motors Club
http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/38932-Tracking-progress-of-EVs-into-Hong-Kong?p=1045107&viewfull=1#post1045107

Hong Kong now has highest density of Tesla superchargers in the world @ SCMP
http://www.scmp.com/tech/enterprises/article/1831675/hong-kong-has-worlds-highest-density-tesla-superchargers

Tesla Live Blog: Q4 Earnings Conference Call Recap @ benzinga
http://www.benzinga.com/news/earnings/15/02/5233311/tesla-live-blog-q4-earnings-conference-call

Hong Kong on charge to make it more EV friendly +Reuters
http://in.reuters.com/video/2015/07/29/hong-kong-on-charge-to-make-it-more-ev-f?videoId=365108793

Volts for Oil | Fully Charged @ YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQpX-9OyEr4

Benefits of using EV @CLP Online
https://www.clponline.com.hk/ev/Pages/AboutEV_Benefits.aspx

BMW A-Hole at Tesla's Cyberport Superchargers (Please share) +YouTube
https://youtu.be/PwkHrhDQVr0

Auto: Tesla Model S-friendly Car Park Map with your Model S' 17" Hack @ Locky's English Playground
http://lockyep.blogspot.hk/2015/07/auto-tesla-model-s-friendly-car-park.html

Auto & Opinions: Best Tesla Model S-Friendly Car Park Map For Hong Kong @ Locky's English Playground
http://lockyep.blogspot.com/2015/02/auto-opinions-best-tesla-model-s.html

CAP 374C ROAD TRAFFIC (PARKING) REGULATIONS reg 25 Offences in relation to car parks
http://www.hklii.hk/eng/hk/legis/reg/374C/s25.html

CAP 374C ROAD TRAFFIC (PARKING) REGULATIONS reg 19 Powers of attendants
http://www.hklii.hk/eng/hk/legis/reg/374C/s19.html

Sign for ICE/EV-but-not charging owners (Printable A4 size) (ICE Sign v.2.0.zip)
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9emHQBd5COmb2NUY0pjUnRKd0k/view?usp=sharing


Sunday, 19 July 2015

Auto: Tesla Model S-friendly Car Park Map with your Model S' 17" Hack



Tesla Model S-friendly Car Park Map
Image from Locky's English Playground
Well, I do wish the title is completely true, but as long as the Transport Department is still disabling our web surfing capability, this hack is the only way to make use of the Tesla Model S-friendly Car Park Map.

And why would I need to use the map if I have navigation on my 17"? Well, that's because despite the amazing power of the navigation, most often when you type in the name of the place you want to go, it doesn't take you directly to the car park entrance. That could be either an inconvenience or a disaster depending on the location and the traffic then. To save time and get right to the car park entrance, the Tesla Model S-friendly Car Park Map does a great job in tagging the location right at the entrance of the car park. The map itself includes navigation by Google Map of course, but you are restricted to using the smartphone. So what if I want to use the 17" and not my phone to navigate? You'll need to do some homework on a PC before you depart.

First of all, go to the map on PC and select the car park you want to visit, say Citygate Outlets South Car Park. You will see the following box pops up.

Geolocation highlighted
Image from Locky's English Playground
As usual, there are great info you may want to read up as well but the key is the geolocation highlighted in the image above. You want to copy that first and paste it in the Google Calendar later.

Google Calendar
Image from Locky's English Playground
Assuming you have already installed the Google Calendar app on your smartphone (this step is necessary as your Tesla app basically draws data from your smartphone's calendar), now go to Google Calendar on PC/smartphone and create an event roughly at the time of your departure, click on Edit event and you will see the page below.

Edit page of Google Calendar
Image from Locky's English Playground


You can leave all the rest blank but you must paste/manually type the geolocation to the Where field. Click SAVE after that. Now you can go to your beloved Tesla Model S.

Official Tesla App
Image from Locky's English Playground
Make sure you have turned ON your calendar sync through your official Tesla app as well as sync your smartphone.

Remember to contact phone to your Model S
Image from Locky's English Playground

Once this is done,  connect your smartphone to your car via Bluetooth.

Schedule displayed on 17"
Image from Locky's English Playground

You will then be able to see the Calendar on the 17" screen first thing you enter the car.

Press and route is set
Image from Locky's English Playground

Simply touch that event you have created on the PC and the Tesla navigation will take you there right at the entrance of the car park. Try this out! It is not very difficult once you get used to it.

I have read from internet forums that the same can be done using iPhone's default calendar, but since I haven't tested it myself, maybe you would like to try this out and let me know by leaving a comments below, on Facebook or on Google+.


Resources:
Auto & Opinions: Best Tesla Model S-Friendly Car Park Map For Hong Kong @ Locky's English Playground
http://lockyep.blogspot.com/2015/02/auto-opinions-best-tesla-model-s.html

Best Tesla Model S-Friendly Car Park Map
http://goo.gl/rClkgh


Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Movie & Opinions: Jurassic World -- My Review & Questions



It is not man VS raptors, it is man teams up with raptors
Image from Jurassic World
Okay, so the last movie review came a little too late and most people have already watched The Avengers 2, but that iskind of my point: what I have said would only not spoiled your mood after you have watched it, right? This time, my Jurassic World review really does contain some spoilers so be warned.

Here are some reasons why I think I am not disappointed by this sequel at all: first, I think it did very well in what it has to do in terms of rekindling the "dino interest" among movie-goers while being limited by the odd storylines set by the previous two movies. Many other reviews on IMDb would disagree with me, saying that the storyline is simple and predictable, but to be fair, when you are dealing with dinosaur movies, or dangerous creatures movies such as sharks, zombies, GM-gorillas and chimps, or even Ultron Sentries as a matter of fact, you can only expect the storyline to be: in control-->lose control--> chaos--> battles-->restore control/unable to restore control, am I right? Whatever twists you can think of in between will not be able to challenge this designated flow of storyline (or generic stages in linguistic term). With The Lost World's (JP2, 1997) weirdest storyline of T-Rex rampaging through the town after a trip on cruise, drinking from swimming pool and eating house puppy, and JP3's (2001) better script but the very worst lost-child's-mother acting, Jurassic World (JP4) has done its best in terms of script.

New theme park, new dinosaur, the Mosasaurus
Image from Jurassic World

Second, the screenwriters know the weaknesses of the movie, yet they managed to shut the audience up. The screenwriters have been reminding the audience over and over throughout the movie that

  1. Jurassic Park was a thing back 20 years ago,
  2. People are no longer interested in common dinosaurs,
  3. People want bigger, louder, scarier dinosaurs, more teeth,
and guess what, none of these isn't true! These are what everyone of us who have watched the last 3 JP movies think. We all think the first movie is the best and none of the previous sequels have impressed us as much as the Jurassic Park, we are no longer interested in common dinosaurs because we can easily see them when we switch the TV to Discovery channel, and we all think that none of the usual dinosaurs in an encyclopaedia can scare us any more, so how can we be satisfied with JP4? The answer has been, in fact, shooting directly at our faces like a laser beam since 1999,


Yes, you are right, this is the answer,

A quote that wins, every time
Image from forums.marvelheroes.com
I mean, how else can we be satisfied if it hasn't been a frickin' mutated dinosaur? The screenwriters know what we want and has made this explicit to us! They even know that running from dinosaurs in high-heels is ridiculous!

Good-looking female runner
Image from superherohype.com
Third, the storyline is restricted by its predecessors in many ways, yet it managed to squeeze out a little twist. Like I have mentioned at the beginning, the flow of the movie can't be changed, and some elements also can't be changed, like there must be raptors 10 times the size of the real-life counterpart, there must be brainy kids with family issues, there must be a park owner whose intention is to do good but eventually made bad decisions, there must be a female role who looks good when she runs, there must be a hero role who knows dinosaurs best, and there must be a T-rex that ruins / saves the day.

2 kids and a hero
Image from hypable.com
This was the winning formula for Jurassic Park and the screenwriters know it, the difference is JP2 and JP3 did terribly in reusing it, whereas JP4 has at least tried to add twists to this formula and turned the raptors from villains into heroes. Sounds ridiculous that raptors listen to a human's order? Well, if crocodiles can understand their own names, then why the highly intelligent raptors cannot?

Gallimimus running on the field in Jurassic World
Image from kryptonradio.com/
Gallimimus running on the field in Jurassic Park
Image from popculturelandscape.com
Fourth, I really like the way the story relates to the old Jurassic Park.
Gate of Jurassic Park
Image from jplegacy.org
Gate of Jurassic World
Image from cultofmac.com
Every step of the way, the actors and actresses remind you of the old Jurassic Park by using the same design of the Jurassic Park gate: the same island Isla Nublar, the same Gallimimus running on the field scene, naming and quoting John Hammond's "spare no expense", bringing audience back to the old park lobby and fallen "When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth" banner, old raptor painting on the wall, old JP jeep with old logo, and to my biggest surprise -- the return of scientist Henry Wu, who is one of the few characters who are still alive yet has not appeared in any sequel and the only Chinese in the movie. Don't you just miss him?


Here's a photo comparison of the old one and the recent Henry Wu,

Henry Wu in Jurassic World and Jurassic Park, 20 years apart
Image from passthepopcorn.my
Lastly, I like the way this movie leaves clue for yet another sequel. When I come to think of it, in Jurassic Park, Dennis Nedry tried to steal embryos but failed tragically. This time round, Henry Wu stole his own work and escape on a helicopter. Who is behind these incidences? Who is always trying to get their hands on these dinos while not wanting to spend money on developing their own? InGen Lab has always been creating these dinosaurs, yet InGen Security seems to be happy to steal its own lab's stuff and take control. Henry Wu seems to have secretly reached a deal with someone from InGen Security, possibly someone from the Jurassic World board who wants to destroy the owner Simon Masrani. All these have probably started since the days of Jurassic Park 20 years ago. There are too many gaps left behind in this movie and we should expect the next JP movie to tell us more about it. I'm really excited about the next one.



PS: Okay, okay, it doesn't mean I have no complaints. Logically speaking, no matter how quiet a dinosaur can be, there is no way could the Indominus Rex successfully climb out without getting the workers' attention, there are people working outside the fences you know? So, there is no way that our hero Owen goes inside the cage without the slightest bit of checking, since he is so smart. And keeping those high-heel shoes on throughout makes sense, since those are her only shoes available, but not breaking those heels at all to make escaping easier? This I can never understand.




Resources:
Movie & Opinions: The Avengers 2 - My Belated Review & Questions @ Locky's English Playground
http://lockyep.blogspot.com/2015/06/movie-opinions-avengers-2-my-belated.html

Crocodiles 'taught to recognise their names' @ Telegraph
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/earth/wildlife/7053745/British-crocodiles-taught-to-recognise-their-names.html

JURASSIC WORLD Official Full Length Trailer @YouTube
https://youtu.be/TTA0DIZ5EdM

The Lost World: Jurassic Park @ IMDb
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0119567/?ref_=nv_sr_1

Jurassic Park III @IMDb
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0163025/?ref_=nv_sr_4

Jurassic World @ IMDb
www.imdb.com/title/tt0369610/?ref_=hm_cht_t0

Austin Powers - Sharks with lasers @YouTube
https://youtu.be/Bh7bYNAHXxw

Jurassic Park 3D Movie CLIP - Life Finds A Way (1993) - Steven Spielberg Movie HD @ YouTube
https://youtu.be/ZnczJcY1Xe8


Monday, 29 June 2015

Movie & Opinions: The Avengers 2 - My Belated Review & Questions



Age of Ultron
Image from wallpaperswide.com
Haven't got to watch too many movies these days. Haven't got the time to write too much either.

The Avengers 2 was perhaps the best in terms of casts, CG, story, dialogues. But that doesn't mean it is without flaws. For me, logical flaws are the ones that get onto my nerve the most, luckily, this movie has done enough to cover my logical senses.

Paul Bettany's Vision
Image from mashable
To me, the biggest problem with the storyline is how did Vision manage to lock Ultron in its main body when Ultron literally outpowered JARVIS and tore it into pieces at the beginning? Did the mind stone give Vision the extra computational power? I thought the mind stone didn't work on Tony Stark in The Avengers 1 when Loki pointed the mind-stone scepter to his arc reactor, so how come it works on Ultron -- a fully metallic being? Which brings us to more follow-up questions on this battle of AI. If JARVIS did a backup of himself, why didn't the even-smarter Ultron too? How can Vision be so sure that that was Ultron's final copy near the end.

What made Stark think and Banner agree that they should put an evil-minded stone-powered AI, something even more powerful than the well-developed JARVIS, into the Ultron program? It doesn't take a genius to recognise the danger of this.

Agent Maria Hill and Agent Phil Coulson in The Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Image from marvelcinematicuniverse.wikia.com
It is sad to see Quicksilver died barely after appearing just 1 movie, buthe did he really die? Those of you who watched The Agents of Shield TV drama series know that Agent Phil Coulson has been resurrected using alien technology and working quietly behind The Avengers' back. The TV drama has tiedone very closely with all Marvel's movies so far and it will be ignorant to ignore the fact that agent Coulson will return in future Avengers' sequels. Then how can we be sure that Quicksilver is really dead? On this, since Sif has worked with Agent Coulson in the TV drama, I would expect her to inform Thor about Coulson's resurrection, so Thor will tell the rest of the team. Meaning that the team should know Coulson is still alive.

Black Widow's lullaby for the Hulk
Image from ew.com
Love between Black Widow and the Hulk was a big surprise for me, since she did really kiss Captain America in The Winter Soldier and engage in so much flirting with him (something that Roger himself told Banner at Stark's party). Whoever ends up with Black Widow is not of my greatest interests, but I do want to see how Marvel wants to develop along this line. More romance or just leave it hanging?

Captain America's vibranium shield
Image from Blogger

Now that the team has defeated Ultron, the Avengers should have confiscated literally tonnes of Vibranium. So logically speaking, Iron Man should be able to create the world's toughest suit very soon. Or will he? I suppose nobody wants even the slightest piece of Ultron or Vibranium to be left scattering around Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch's home country Sokovia, right?

Broken shield and dead Thor?
Image from Yahoo
The shield doesn't seem to be indestructible though. The part when Stark was subjected to the 'fear' magic of Scarlet Witch, he had visions(?) of all his friends dead, except the almost-dead Captain America who said to him, "why didn't you do more?" Whether his visions are real or not is still a big question, because if it is real, then Captain's shield will surely break, and all Avengers will die. In his vision, there was someone lying on the top of the hill, motionless, but who that really was is still an unknown.

Elizabeth Olsen in Age of Ultron
Image from fanpop.com
Cleavage shots were once the sole property of Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow, but not any more in the Age of Ultron, as the youngest Olsen's sister basically filled large proportion of her screen time with feminism. Obviously, she is not afraid of showing a little of her body, given her earlier work in Martha Marcy May Marlene (2011) and Oldboy (2013). But then in a way, Age of Ultron captured her cleavage a little too much for my liking. Don't get me wrong, I don't go against feminism. I celebrate it with all respect, but feminism needs not be overly-portrayed through breasts and cleavages. Particularly that shot right after she felt her brother was killed, when she leaned all the way forward... Man! I was trying to focus on the story you know?

Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow
Image from ScreenSlam
All in all, this is still a fantastic movie, and I can't wait for the DVD to be released as the deleted scenes of the popular villain Loki is expected to be included in it. My baby girl also loves watching the Avengers, and she is already watching all Avengers 2 videos on YouTube, so Marvel, please release that DVD / Blu-ray earlier.


PS: And yes, if you do find the lifting hammer scene funny, how about knowing how heavy Thor's hammer (Mjölnir) really is?



Resources:
Ultron @ Marvel Cinematic Universe Wikia
http://marvelcinematicuniverse.wikia.com/wiki/Ultron

The Vision: Everything you need to know before seeing 'Avengers: Age of Ultron' @ Mashable
http://mashable.com/2015/05/01/the-vision-avengers-age-of-ultron-paul-bettany/

Elizabeth Olsen Says ‘No’ to More Nudity @ Fleshbot
http://straight.fleshbot.com/5997883/elizabeth-olsen-says-no-to-more-nudity

Sam Explains The Duct-Taped Shield @ The Sundry Times
http://copperbadge.tumblr.com/post/50046178435/sam-explains-the-duct-taped-shield

How Much Does Thor's Hammer Weigh? @ YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TbdH28prqac

AVENGERS 2 Age of Ultron Movie Clip "Lifting Thor's Hammer" @ YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=viK5I5eYtbo