Energy Conversion Starts Making Sense

I just came to realize that my most hated subject at the moment, EE204: Energy Conversion,[1] in which I have flunked my exams 2 out of 2, would be useful to me as an aspiring Electronics Engineer. At first, as an ECE student, I thought I’m not going to need this course since I’m not planning to specialize in electric power generation that EEs should be doing.

While browsing through blogs and tech news sites like I usually do, I’ve read about emerging technologies that deals with the use of hand cranks and similar manually-operated power generators, instead of the conventional way of plugging devices onto a power outlet. I’ve also read about environmental issues concerning electric power consumption and conservation with computer and even search engine usage.

We still haven’t gone to discuss DC generators as we are just halfway through the course. But, seeing how the OLPC plans to make human-powered laptop computers by means of a crank, a pedal or a pull-cord in the form of XO-1 to be distributed to children on developing countries who have little access to electricity, I got the insight. Furthermore, I just saw a portable media player utilizing the same idea, thanks to Bernie of Talkin’ Tech.

I know I shouldn’t have been posting this now as our preliminary exam week is just a day away, and the exam on EE204 is first on the list. I am just happy to see current applications of what I am studying theoretically as it gives me more understanding of the subject matter.

So, let me just ask, what would you say about manually-powered electronic devices that use less power than conventional ones? Would you be seen using it in the future or you would just stick to conventional devices until none of them exists anymore? Hand cranks and pedal generators on the nearest Wi-Fi–enabled coffee shop, anyone?

Footnote:

  1. ^ a course dealing with the conversion of mechanical energy to electrical energy (as with generators) and vice versa (as with motors)

The Aftermath

Yes, I know this is a story long overdue. I’ve had three very long mornings of derangement and two evenings of sleepful nights—very, very unusual for me. Bagyong Milenyo made sure of that. We lost power the morning of September 28. By the morning of the 30th, we’ve used up all stored water for bathing (since our village relies on water pumps and we do not have a big water tank at home). After going to school, I immediately went to my grandparents’ house in Quezon City instead of going home since their power was brought back just a day after the storm. My mother brought me clothes enough to last me for the weekend, and though electricity came back to our house the night we were on my grandparents’ house, I stayed there for two nights since I haven’t been with my cousins for a long time. Four days without blog hopping and mail checking dented me internally. *exaggerating*

But that wasn’t the only aftermath I’ve encountered. Guess what the other one is …

Well, I currently am taking Differential Equations, a Math subject, this semester. After Math? I would still take Differential Equations. Yes, I failed it this sem; my *curses* professor announced it right after the last class of the semester. T_T

Hmmm … looking at the bright side. I am exempted from taking the final exams since I would still fail anyway. No need to bother studying that right now. *tee-hee*

The Weekend

At last, only a couple of weeks and a handful of schoolwork are left before I graduate from sophomore year! Before this weekend came, it was almost like hell that I could not have survived. But, yes, I am just exaggerating. 😆

My Eng 107A final exam speech about series and parallel circuits was through. I’ve got an average of 15.67 points out of 20 — fair enough for lacking eye contact with the listeners and the judges. My Fil 2 concept paper about science fiction movies have been passed — defense is left to be done on Tuesday. A quiz on Phys 205 and Math 109 also gave me a headache! And, CWTS is finally through! CWTS 2 requirements were passed and graduation took place earlier this day. I really did not expect receiving one of the two best group awards for section E (1-7) but, yeah, we got it! Now I will never have to worry about those INC grades our teacher scared us then about. 😛

Let us now go to the extra-curricular side of the story. I have passed my application for the Assistant Committee Head for the Web & Technical Committee of the ESC. I really hope to be accepted though fellow TomWeb volunteers applied for an assistant head position, which I think is also for the Web & Technical Committee. It really was something I could not have opt for but I really want to do something especially if it means something to be added to my CV. 😛

Finally, my life story: My dentist told me last February 11th that he may be able to remove my braces the next month. Excited, I went there last Friday. Unfortunately, my lower incisors still move that he could still not remove my braces. 🙁 So now I’m left excited, still, for April. 😛

Please wish me good luck for another hell week and for the final exams week! I badly need it. 😀

A Bloody Good Souvenir

So many weeks have passed and I haven’t been able to update my blog. School work and social activities, I think, somehow hindered me to do so. Another thing was my host’s hardware failure erasing most of my readers’ comments, which I happen to treasure more than my articles themselves. Most of all, I really had been pressuring myself to write really good articles especially for a grand re-entrance to the blogosphere, which I sadly figured I can’t — that’s too much for my skills. I’m just going to write this like I haven’t been gone. Please bear with me. 🙂

An inch-long skin-peel I have been on a really tight schedule now that I have school for six days a week. NSTP CWTS took my Monday vacation for its weekly activities. I really have been enjoying digging and leveling soil, and moving 50-kg concrete blocks during our off-campus activities. What I didn’t like was the fact the I had to ride 6-7 different public transportation routes and/or vehicles just to get there. This was the off-campus activities’ last day. Fortunately, I’ve had a souvenir. 😆

It didn’t hurt so much, I’ve just peeled my skin off for about an inch long. I just hope it wouldn’t cause infections. That photo was taken about 12 hours after the incident with the iron pick; the wound applied with an ointment. I wish I had taken photo sooner that it would look more bloody fresh and gross. *haha* 😛

Preliminary exams week has just passed making me more comfortable to write something again. Hopefully, this would go on and on again.

A lot has changed about me this new year — more fat, less computer. I’m beginning to hate myself! 😆

On Writing

I never wanted to be gone for so long. My blog is rotting with the smell of old posts. Ehehe … I haven’t finished the whole site, either. But, final examinations is getting nearer by the minute — next week to be exact. I hope vacation would make me think more and write more. Here’s my story:

It was earlier this day that I first met fulfillment in our Literature class. Yes — the first time in four months! We — my partner and I — have passed the Book Report on Cost Price by Kerima Polotan, which serves as our final exam in Lit 102. We were the first group to submit; the only group today to submit. I know our professor was happy — of course, we both were, too. Now, I have nothing to worry about except the other exams coming next week! 🙂

Another fulfilling thing was when we all were asked which selection from our textbook touched us in one way or another. She made each one discuss why we chose it. I was thinking about choosing Sayonara by Edilberto Tiempo — the moral was pretty straightforward: not all enemies are bad — but the hesitation grew in me as I really haven’t swallowed the whole story. I asked my seatmate if what I was thinking was correct. But simple hesitation backfired upon me — he was called to recite first, and guess what happened next: he recited what I told him! I was shocked! Anger grew inside me, but I have to think fast. I cannot repeat what he said, it was my fault anyway for trusting him with my precious answer. So I thought carefully, and chose Family Rites by Rosario Cruz Lucero, instead.

Reality dawned upon me that personal reflection should not only be made from the context of the story alone but also with how the story was written. Yes, I like writing — it is one reason I blog. But thoughts cannot be words unless I put more time and effort unto it. This is what I realized from Lucero’s short story. She made the story with every thought no one would be saying out loud — or even in whisper. I didn’t even realize I have thought about those things until she mentioned it. My precious answer was not so precious after all.

Now, I just realized what I lack — the same reason I haven’t written something in almost a month. Put more time in thoughts as you translate them to words … and the world will know what you feel.

Oh, and by the way, I’ve lip-read my teacher say, very good, after I have recited. 🙂

Note: Try to read Family Rites by Rosario Cruz Lucero; I hope you feel the same way I do. 🙂