Thursday, December 18, 2008

Homemade Chili with DS

I was working from home today due to snow, so I tried my hand at cooking chili with the help of my Nintendo DS. The whole process was surprisingly easy. I marked the ingredients in the chili recipe that I didn't have, and the DS created a shopping list for me. I brought my DS with me to QFC and checked off ingredients as I got them.

When I was ready to start cooking, the DS read aloud every step of the recipe for me. All I had to do was follow the instructions and yell "continue" when I was done. If I wanted, I could yell "more info" to see details about a step (like watch a video showing the proper way to dice an onion). Before I knew it, I had made chili!

Okay, so there were some minor difficulties. The pan I used was too small, so some liquid spilled over the side. Also, I had never used cayenne pepper or paprika before, so I wasn't sure how much to use, resulting in a slightly spicier chili.

More pictures.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

More Snow


Good news is I have running water again!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cold and Waterless


Sometimes you don't really appreciate something until it's gone. Running water is definitely one of those things. I got up this morning to discover that all the faucets in my house were kaput. I suspected frozen pipes, and I went to work hoping they would thaw on their own. No such luck (see picture of still frozen gutter drain).

At least I have plenty of bottled water...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Image Editing with Java and Excel

Here's a nice 2560x1600 image I found the other day. I thought I had the perfect desktop wallpaper, except there was this unsightly dark rectangle on the left side of the image. I'm the kind of guy who gets irked by dead pixels on my monitors and TVs; I can't enjoy a movie unless the picture is perfect. So, there was no way I could use this wallpaper as is. However, it seemed like such a travesty to waste an otherwise perfectly good image.

First, I tried trusty old Photoshop. I selected the dark rectangle and applied the brightness/contrast filter. But alas, it seemed like no combination of brightness and contrast values did the trick of completely removing the rectangle.

After a little thought, I realized that the dark rectangle is really just a function, mapping the original pixel value to another pixel value. If I knew what that function was, I could apply the inverse function and restore the original pixel values! Finding that function is the tricky part. If I could only get a good sample of original pixel values and corresponding dark pixel values, I could approximate it however. Then it hit me; I could look at the right edge of the dark rectangle. Pixel values generally don't change too much over just a few pixels, so I could take the pixel just to the right of the edge to be the original value and take the pixel just to the left of the edge to be the corresponding dark pixel value! Of course, JPEG artifacts and high texture areas in the image would make the data a bit noisy, but the idea should still work.

I wrote a quick Java program to get the data. The program went down the edge, making a map from original pixel value to a list of all corresponding dark pixel values. When finished, it would output all the original pixel value it had seen, and the average corresponding dark pixel value. I had it only output the original value if it had seen it at least 3 times (to reduce noise in the data). I then imported the data into Excel, made a scatter chart, and computed a liner regression.

I created another Java program to apply the inverse function to the rectangle. This is the final result. You can still make out the outline of the rectangle, but it's much better than before.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Dual 30" Monitors

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Living Room Upgrade

Before

After

See more pictures

After deliberating on whether to fill my empty living room, I actually did it. Originally I was just going to Ikea to look at stuff; I wasn't going to buy anything. But you know what they say, "You never leave Ikea empty handed." Somehow I ended up leaving with a new coffee table, end table, TV stand, lamp, and candle holders. I would have also left with a new leather sofa and loveseat, but they were too big to fit in my car (they were delivered on Monday).

If this wasn't enough, I then went to Fry's and bought a 52" Sharp LCD TV. The next day I bought an Xbox360. For comparison, you can take a look at my temporary living room setup last year (32" TV and Wii).

I also plan to build a Home Theater PC to play my video collection, but I have a feeling I should lay off the credit card for a while...

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Wendy's Dollar Menu


It's clearly awesome.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Dependency Graph


In order to play Tales of Vesperia, I need an XBOX360.

In order to use an XBOX360, I need an HD TV and a TV stand.

In order to enjoy the TV, I need a couch and a coffee table.

In order to acquire a couch, I need to rent a truck.



I think I'll stick with PC gaming for now.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Dell 3008WFP Input Lag

I've been watching the 3008WFP monitor like a hawk on Dell's website, and it's price has never dropped below $2000. I've also called Dell to order it twice, but gave up after only managing to negotiate the price down a measly $50. Even after pointing them to this forum thread where people were getting $400 discounts and more. I'm pretty bad at negotiating.

So I'm about ready to just give in and order the 3007WFP HC, which can be had for $1200. It doesn't have as wide a color gamut, and it only has DVI input, but other than that, it's about the same. In fact, you could say it's better since it has less input lag. That extra 30ms input lag could mean the difference between life and death when playing TF2 right?

I know, sour grapes...

Friday, August 22, 2008

Ubuntu


Yet another reason why Ubuntu 8.04 is teh awesome.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Rock Band


OMG this game is addictive. After the first time I played, I had a crazy dream about playing the Rock Band drum set. The very next day (a Saturday), I went to work with some friends just to play Rock Band. We must have played for about 10 hours straight.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Camp Muir


The 4.5 mile, 6 hour climb up to Camp Muir was a long excruciating journey, but I did it!

Some lessons I learned:
  • Get more than 3 hours of sleep the night before.
  • Bring only the essentials. No more, no less.
  • Waterproof boots are essential.
Pictures to prove it.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Java Color Console


Here's a Java snippet that prints color output to the console (in a VT100 emulating terminal, i.e., in linux only):

for (int i = 30; i < 38; i++) {
System.out.println("\033[" + i + "mHello " +
"\033[1;" + i + "mWorld!\033[m");
}

It works by "printing" special terminal control commands that change the color. There are other VT100 terminal control commands that let you move the cursor around, clear the screen, and other things.

Who needs Swing, when you can make old-school ASCII interfaces, right? No fancy libraries required either.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Water Sport Progression



I've spent the last few weekends doing various water related activities.
  1. Canoeing on Union Bay
  2. Kayaking at Deception Pass
  3. Whitewater Rafting the Skagit River (Class 3)
As you can see, I'm trying progressively more extreme activities. The logical question is: what even more dangerous activity involving water should I do next?

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony


...was pure awesomeness! I think the people complaining about how fake it was are just jealous. More high res photos.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Mashable Party

I went to the Mashable party in Seattle on Saturday with David and Candy. Actually, it wasn't really a party, but more of a product fair with alcohol. All the sponsors had tables set up and were pitching their products. Most of these were pretty boring, except for the MySites table, where you could get free drink tickets by solving puzzles.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Chinese Wedding



I was the photographer for my Mom's wedding. See the full album here.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Retaining Wall


After three weeks of manual labor, I've finally completed construction of my wall. The next step is to prepare the area for planting, which means pulling grass and tilling the soil. I'm using tarps to kill the grass by starving them of sunlight. View the album to see more pictures.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Hyundai Sonata ESC-Off Light

I took my Hyundai Sonata to the dealer on Monday to get an oil change and to get a light bulb in the dashboard replaced (the ESC-Off light). The Sonata's Electronic Stabilization Control (ESC) system has two lights: the ESC light comes on when the system actives, and the ESC-Off light comes on when you turn the system off. My ESC-Off light doesn't come on when I turn the system off.

I thought it would take an hour or so to fix at most. I didn't expect them to not even be able to fix such a simple problem. Note that this is after I called them about the problem weeks ago and had them order the necessary parts. Now they want me to bring the car back for a full day, which is exactly what I wanted to avoid. The reason I waited until my scheduled oil change to get the light fixed was so I wouldn't have to make an extra trip to the dealer.

At least it's covered under warranty.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Jelly Belly

We just got containers full of Jelly Bellys at the office. This isn't
going to be good for my diet.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Cloverfield

I just finished watching Cloverfield and found it unexpectedly good. The film's unique style kind of reminds me of The Office (just the style, not the plot), while the long uncut action sequences are amazing and remind me of similar sequences from Children of Men.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Bot Hell

I noticed something interesting today. Firefox wants to spell correct "Bothell" to "Bot hell". Maybe my computer is trying to tell me something...

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

180 Blocks


I came home to find the 180 concrete blocks I ordered had arrived. I was pleased that they were placed to the side of my driveway, and not blocking it. They will be used to build a small retaining wall in my backyard to cordon off a garden area.

However, spending 2 hours hauling these blocks around has made me wonder just what have I gotten myself into.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Truth About the 3G iPhone "Price Drop"

To no one's surprise, Steve Jobs announced the new iPhone at WWDC yesterday. 3G, and GPS are the two big features.

There was also mention of a $200 price drop, from $399 to $199. But unlike the first price drop from $599 to $399, this one is all spin and BS. This price drop is due to the phone being subsidized by AT&T, and you're actually going to be paying more in the long term. What Jobs didn't mention at the keynote is the 3G data plan is $30 a month, which is $10 more per month than the Edge data plan. Over the lifetime of the two year contract, that adds up to an additional $240. Hmm, that price drop now looks like a net $40 price increase.

If you're thinking about just buying the iPhone, and unlockling it to go with another carrier like T-Mobile, you can forget about it. Apple has changed their activation policy. You now have to active the iPhone at the store. No more at home iTunes activation, no more online ordering. Looks like AT&T has gotten smart to all the unlocking that's been going on.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Nightmare at the Office

It's late evening and I'm working at my desk at the office. Suddenly my screen goes black. I notice the room has gone eerily quiet. The light from outside the window seems somehow brighter even though the sun is about to set.

"Damn it!" I hear one of my officemates yell. The frustration in his voice is clear. "SHIT!" I hear someone down the hall scream out. Initial confusion is turning into panic as the realization hits people like a damp sponge.

They warned us about disasters like this. Most of us even know the precautions that should be taken to minimize the damage. I always hear people tell horror stories about friends who have lost everything. But none of it does any good. You're never prepared when it happens to you.

People are starting to accept it. What they lost - some more than others unfortunately. But there is an even more pressing concern. One that few have yet to understand. The smart ones are already slowly, quietly making their way to the exit.

Someone must have whispered a little too loudly. Maybe someone overheard. All I know is one moment it was relatively calm. The next, it was chaos. The panic spread like wildfire in a drought. Everyone's running, trying to get out before it's too late. No one wants to be trapped.

People are stumbling around. The hallway is so dark. Somehow I make it to the stairs. I hear dull thuds and metal clanging echo up the stairwell. I was on the top floor. Fear starts to set in as I realize I must be one of the last ones left.

I quicken my pace. Maybe too quick. I trip over something soft. I thought I heard a groan, but it's hard to see with the dim EM lighting. I have no time to stop and check. I need to get out before it shuts and never opens again.

I made it down the stairs. The trip felt like an eternity. The underground lot is even darker than the stairs, but I'm close now. I just need to find one thing. I try to remember where I left it. But each moment I stand here is costing me valuable seconds.

I need to start moving. Fortunately, I quickly find what I was looking for. I hope my luck lasts. Now, there's just one more obstacle left. I make my way towards the exit and pray... Yes! The gate is still open! I must be feeling lucky!

I just escaped The Blackout.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Pimp My Bike


I've been riding my bike for a week now and it hasn't fallen apart yet. I still need to re-tighten the front and back brake pads after every ride. It's surprising there's still material on the brake pad to wear down.

I made a few upgrades for my bike:
  1. Replaced the seat with a more cushioned seat.
  2. Added headlight and blinking taillight.
  3. Added water bottle holder.
I'm still just riding around my neighborhood. Maybe next weekend, I'll try riding on a street with traffic.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Mike's Cocktails - Not Good


I found these drinks at QFC the other day. I like Mike's Hard Lemonade, so I thought I might enjoy these. Boy was I wrong.

The lemon drop was the only one I managed to force myself to finish. By no means did I enjoy it. The mike-arita was horrible. The mojito was the worst. It tasted like vodka mixed with mint toothpaste mixed with some sugar.

Anyone who likes these must be crazy.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

How Good is a $70 Bike?

As a test run, I rode my bike to QFC and back, about 4 miles round trip. I tried to stay off the main roads as much as possible, as I'm still scared of cars. Overall it went pretty well, with some exceptions.
  1. The seat was really uncomfortable. It felt like I was sitting on a bumpy, sharp rock. Not fun.
  2. The brakes wore down to the point that they were unusable. I almost hit a fence going down a hill because fully squeezing both brake levers did hardly anything.
  3. Finally, my 18-speed bike is more like a 6-speed bike. Let me explain. I have a left shifter labeled 1, 2, 3 and a right shifter labeled 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 for a theoretical combination of 18 speeds. In practice, I'm not supposed to use the extreme gear combinations where the chain is not in a straight line. This eliminates 8 combinations: 1-4, 1-5, 1-6, 2-1, 2-6, 3-1, 3-2, 3-3. Then, to make matters worse, I've never been able to successfully shift the left to 3 or the right to 1, eliminating another 4 combinations: 1-1, 3-4, 3-5, 3-6. This leave just 6 combinations that I can use: 1-2, 1-3, 2-2, 2-3, 2-4, 2-5.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Buying a Bike at Walmart

I finally got a bike! I considered getting a cheap one off craigslist, but most of them were surprisingly expensive. So I got this 26" 18-speed mountain bike for about $70 from Walmart.

Shopping there was painful, as usual. The bike I wanted was on the top, and it was apparent no associate was going to offer to help me get it down. The woman I finally drafted to help me did not look happy about the job at all. She got a ladder, realized it was too short, then disappeared for 15 minutes to get a bigger ladder. Once she returned, I offered to just use the ladder and get it down myself, saving her the trouble, but she said it was against store policy. While she was trying to get it down, I seriously worried for her safety and wondered why a more in-shape associate wasn't doing this.

All together, it took 30 minutes to actually get the bike down. Then while I was riding the bike to the cash registers, another associate told me it was against store policy to do so. How else was I supposed to test it? Finally, as I'm walking my bike out of store, another associate tells me to stop. At this point, I just want to leave the store as quickly as possible, so I ignored her, knowing that I have no legal obligation to stay in the store. She actually ran outside after me and grabed the bike to stop me. I considered arguing with her, but instead just showed her the damn receipt.

Did I mention how much I hate Walmart?

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Squirrel Holes?

The other day, I saw two squirrels in my backyard and quickly snapped some pictures from my kitchen window. When I looked at the pictures later, I saw something strange: two brown patched in my yard that look like dirt. So I go out for a closer look and see this:


What in the world? They're definitely holes, but I'm not sure how deep they are or where they lead. Then there's the mystery of how they got there and what made them. Was it the squirrels? Invisible gophers? Malicious neighbors? Rare geological phenomena? Tiny mole people? Aliens? I'm definitely keeping a close eye on the happenings in my backyard from now on.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Bike to Work Day


I really wanted to join the fun and bike to work today. The weather was perfect and the traffic on 405 was horrible. There was an accident that caused long delays, which doubled my normal 20-minute commute.

To make myself feel better, I came up with the following excuses for my non-participation:
  1. I don't have a bike.
  2. I'm afraid of annoying/getting hit by cars.
  3. 13.5 miles is a long way to bike.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Could I Have OCD?

I think I may have OCD.

Last night I was making some modifications to my car. A few months ago, I installed a third-party car stereo with line-in so I could use my iPhone to play music in my car. The problem is the iPhone creates audible interference whenever there is data transfer going on. At first I didn't mind, but now it is getter more annoying. Thankfully I found a solution: ferrite beads.

First, I cut up a cable to extract the ferrite bead. This was not easy. The cable I used encases the bead in about half an inch of plastic. I whittled away at a corner with a knife for five minutes before I saw any ferrite at all. I decided to give up and just keep the plastic in place.

Next I tried installing the ferrite bead in my car. This is when I made my biggest mistake. I had removed the stereo so I could tape the ferrite bead to the speaker wires. Before I could do that however, the bead slipped out of my hand and into a cavity in the stereo enclosure. Instinctively I reached for it, only to push it further into the dark nether reaches of my car's interior.

Here's when I think my OCD kicks in. All I can think about is this freakin ferrite bead being stuck in my car. I'm not thinking rationally anymore. I worry the additional weight will decrease my gas mileage, or that it will rattle when I drive. I try for half an hour trying various methods of extracting it with no success. I seriously consider disassembling the entire front panel. I really can't get anything else done for the rest of the night. I try to fall asleep, but I lie awake for about an hour thinking about my car.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Not So Stimulating After All


I got my tax stimulus payment of $600 direct deposited into my bank account last Friday (^_^). Today, I got my homeowner's insurance bill for $595 (T_T).

Looks like I have $5 left to stimulate the economy. I wonder what I should buy?

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Homemade Apple Pie

I recently rediscovered how delicious apple pie can be and decided to try my hand at making one myself. Here's the recipe I used. The pie turned out great, though the crust was a bit hard.

Monday, April 28, 2008

LEGO Light Switcher



This video demonstrates how the LEGO light switcher I made works.

Rest assured, I did not damage my home's electrical or structural integrity in any way. As you can see in the video, the device can be easily removed and the light switch can be used the old-fashioned way. Why anyone would want to do that when they have this awesome device is another matter.

In the video, I'm controlling the light switcher with the RCX remote, but it can also be controlled from my computer via NQC commands (See this earlier post). It will soon become apparent why this method of control is useful...

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies

Mmmm, homemade chocolate chip cookies. (recipe)


Sunday, April 20, 2008

Homemade Hamburger

Cost of ingredients for hamburger from QFC: $15

Patty Ingredients: 1lb ground beef, 1 handful bread crumbs, 1/2 chopped onion, 1/4 cup beef broth, 1 egg, salt, pepper, spices.

Mix together.

Shape into patties.

Toppings.

I can has Hamburger!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Seattle Snowstorm

This is what we call a blizzard in Seattle.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Take Me Out to the Ball Game


I'm not a big baseball fan, but with a little arm twisting, I was dragged convinced to attend my first baseball game last Tuesday. The Mariners beat the Kansas City Royals 11 to 6. Apparently, they also set a record for most suicide flys in a game or something. I'm not sure because it was difficult to follow what was happening due to the fact that I was freezing to death the whole time.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Experiments in Weed Control


The rocky area next to my driveway is infested with weeds. I thought it would be a cinch to move the rocks, put in some landscaping fabric, and then move the rocks back. Of course, it's always harder than it sounds.

Three hours of backbreaking labor later, I'm not even a quarter of the way done. I discover the fabric is all used up, due to me greatly underestimated the size of the area. I also find that I need to buy more rocks in order to cover all the fabric, and I have no idea where to buy them.

There may also be a problem with the fabric. When I bought it I chose the one that said most durable or something of that nature, thinking it would be the best at stopping weeds. I didn't realize this would also mean that it would prevent water from seeping through. I guess I'll have to wait until it rains to see if I created a very large, shallow pool.

I probably should have just used roundup.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

How Not to Buy Dance Pads


I wanted to play StepMania the free, open-source, awesome dancing rhythm game for the PC. In order to do so properly, I needed a dance pad (playing with a keyboard doesn't count). Here's where things start to get complicated.

Instant Gratification

When I get an idea into my head, I like to act on it right at that moment. That's why the first thing I did was drive to some brick-and-mortar stores. I went to Fry's, Best Buy, and Walmart, hoping they would have dance pads - and I was right - just none that were compatible with the PC. So I go home and order from Amazon. I order a cheap Red Octane PlayStation 2 dance pad, and I also order a PlayStation 2 to USB converter.

The Worst Present Ever

You know that feeling you got when you were a kid right before Christmas? Anticipation mixed with anger over why you can't have your present now. That's how I feel whenever I'm waiting for a delivery. Of course, none of it matters when the day finally comes and you're holding the package in your hands, ready to rip it open. That moment, is the best moment of all - except of course, when you get clothes instead of an xbox360, or in my case, the thing doesn't work.

I plug the dance pad into the PS2 to USB adapter and plug that into my PC. I configure the inputs in StepMania and then use the pad to navigate to and start a song. So far so good. When I'm trying to play the song though, I find I'm missing all the left-right and up-down jump steps. Thinking it's a problem with my dance pad, I try to smooth it out, but no luck, it's still broken (or so I thought - more on this later).

Two for the Price of Two

After waiting for a week for my dance pad, only to find that it doesn't work, I get a little angry. I'm not the best decision maker when I'm angry, so in hindsight, driving back to BestBuy and buying another dance pad may not have been the best decision. But anyway, that's what I did.

Faulty Diagnostics

So I'm back home with my new dance pad ready to play some StepMania and what happens? The dance pad I just bought doesn't work either. It has the same exact problem. Since I had bought a different brand and the bug was too similar to be a coincidence, it can only mean one thing. It wasn't the dance pads that were faulty, it was the converter!

After the euphoria of my great revelation wears off, I'm even more upset. This means I bought an extra dance pad that I don't need, and the worst part is I have to order another adapter (since no conventional stores seem to have it), which means another week of agonizing waiting! By this point, I'm ready to give up, I don't even want to play StepMania anymore.

Google is Your Friend

Just for kicks, I do some searching, not really expecting a solution to my problems. How wrong I was to underestimate the power of the internet. StepMania has a wiki, that wiki has a page devoted to all the different USB converters, the one I purchased is on there with a comment talking about my exact problem and a very simple fix.

The fix?

Press the Up, Start, and Select buttons for 3 seconds to put it in multistep mode. -o-

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Cop Avoidance Device


My friend Kevin Chiu got me this cop avoidance device (i.e., radar detector), seeing as how I've had problems with them in the past. It's too early to tell if it actually works...

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Building My First Computer


My 2.5 year old Dell Inspiron 9300 was beginning to show signs of its age (i.e., not being able to play Crysis at a decent framerate), and I felt it was the right time to get a new computer.

The processor and video card were easy decisions:
* Q6600 @ 2.4GHz (OC to 3.3GHz)
* 8800GT w/512MB

For components that were harder to choose, I usually picked what was relatively cheap and popular on Newegg:
* Gigabyte P35 motherboard
* PC Power & Cooling 610W power supply
* Antec 900 case

For the hard drive, memory, and optical drive, it didn't really matter what brand I got, so I just went for what was cheapest:
* WD 1TB hard drive
* 2x Crucial 1GB DDR2 800 memory
* Samsung DVD burner

I got most of the components from Newegg, and I went to Fry's to get the case. The total came to around $1300.

Go here if you want to see more pictures of the computer assembly.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

AMIP


I've been searching for a way to make using iTunes more bearable. There are only two reasons I keep it around: I need it to sync with my iPhone, and I need it to keep track of my playcounts (I don't rate my music, I just use playcounts). It's a terribly slow and bulky music player, and I would ditch it for Winamp in a heartbeat if not for the reasons I just mentioned. Winamp is much much faster and has features I need like, global hotkeys, jump-to dialog, better visualizations, and smooth fade on play/pause.

Thank God there's AMIP. AMIP is like the Swiss Army knife of plugins - it can do almost anything and is compatible with every popular music player. You need to download the version of AMIP for your player and the AMIP Configurator. Out-of-the-box you get the extremely useful search/jump feature, much like Winamp's jump-to dialog. Just press the hotkey to bring up the search/jump box, start typing the song you want and see the results filter down as you type, then hit enter to play the song and make the box go away.

AMIP's original purpose was to automatically announce the song your were playing to IRC, which is something I have no interest in. I am however, very interested in AMIP's ability to act as a server and the SDKs available to write your own client. In particular, the Java SDK makes it extremely easy to write a Java AMIP client.

You may be wondering what this means. Who cares if AMIP can act as a server? Why would you want to write a client? Well, it means that you have a substantial amount of control over your music player. It means, if you want, you never have to look at your player's slow ugly UI again; you can just keep it minimized and interact with it through your own homegrown frontend, personalized to show exactly the info you want with only the controls you want. It means you can log much more about your music listening habits, not just how many times you played each song, but when you played it, what other songs you played it with, and how much of it you listened to. It means you can control your player over a network, across your house on your LAN or across the internet (if you really wanted to).