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Nov 10

Are You Ready to Kinect?

Over the past weekend, I had the pleasure of being invited to demonstrate the latest and greatest gadget from XBOX called Kinect.  Between you and me, I have NEVER been a big fan of video games, and some of my friends are still chuckling to themselves that I’ve become somewhat of a “Konvert.”  But because Kinect is so different in its approach to the entire video game experience, I knew I had to give it a shot.  Personally, I think the youth of today spend too much time on their butts in front of a television or computer.  In general, people just aren’t active as they used to be, and it shows up BIG time on their torsos (and other areas), especially a lot of young people.

One of the big culprits of this sedentary dilemma is of course the video game trend.  However, I think Microsoft has really taken an “active” approach in making this experience an “exercise” of fun for the entire family.  If you didn’t happen to be down at Plaza Singapura over the past weekend, let me give you an idea of what I am talking about.

To start off, I demonstrated how to throw the discus from the Kinect Sports game.  Using absolutely NO remote control units, I just simply move my hands around to navigate Kinect.  I simply extend my arm to “grab the discuss…” (You can see what’s happening on the TV from the video screen behind me in the pictures)

Once I have it within my sinister clutches, I just heave it like the way the Olympians do…but without the need to spin around a few hundred times.

After a few “warmup” attempts that were embarrassingly low, I finally chucked one discuss to a new World Record!

Actually, this isn’t too hard once you get the hang of it so the game is great for your ego too!

After I threw my arm out playing with the discuss, it was time to pick someone from the audience to do some Boxing, which is my favorite Kinect Sports game at the moment.  Most of the crowd was a little shy to get on stage, but there was this one boy who was ready to knock me out!

Once the bell rang for the first round, he came out swinging like Pac-Man!

Luckily for me, the age-old adage is true where “Nothing Trumps Experience.”  And since I’ve had a week to some boxing of my own with Kinect, I made sure to keep my record untarnished and knocked him out in the third round.  Still, it was a hard-fought battle, and we both got a good sweat from the bout.

Finally, it was time to cool down and show off the new Table Tennis game, and I totally lucked out to have celebrity and newly-ordained hot mama Jaymee Ong in the house to hit some ping pong balls with me…

Jaymee was scheduled to appear after me to showcase another new exciting workout game from EA Sports for Kinect so she figured she’d do a quick warm up with me first…

Again, it doesn’t hurt that I played this game before so you could say I had a slight advantage…

Before you knew it, we were both paddling those ping pong balls like the pros from Singapore!

Fortunately, I was able to build enough of a lead while Jaymee was still learning the game so I held on to hold her off from victory.  We are currently in discussion to set a time for another World Title Rematch.

I hope you enjoyed my Kinect experience over the past weekend.  I had a great time and fun workout playing the various games, and I know you’ll be on the same page if you decide to try it out.  Thanks again to Eric and his team at Microsoft for giving me the opportunity to reevaluate and change my stance on video games cuz Kinect seriously and literally kicks my butt!

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Nov 10

Asking for More

Well, it’s been a while since I last posted a blog so I figured it’s time to get back into the swing of things.  I’ve been pretty busy with my paternal duties, but work will soon pick up once again, which means I will continue to post up some more blogs.  In the meantime, I am going to share some pictures I took from tonight’s episode of The Amazing Race Asia.  Maybe you can even guess whether we are still in Brisbane, Australia, or not?

During the course of the race, I always make an effort to take pictures even though our film crew has very little time to stay at one place for too long.  Along the way, I occasionally come across a “gem” of a shot like the one above.  I really like how “raw” this photo turned out of the old lady begging on the street.  I made sure to give her a contribution for the shot taken too.

Something about black & white shots just adds much more character with less color.  Ironic, huh?  Here’s another picture of my cameraman Yves on the same day…

Now, there’s been some people who are curious as to whether this shot below had undergone the sinister clutches of Adobe Photoshop?

…and the answer is an emphatic NO.  I have never been a big fan of all the touching up and “corrections” that goes into pictures these days.  Talk about false advertisement.  People should be taken literally for who they are, and not completely “re-digitized” to mislead and influence the public.  Whenever I go for a shoot, I make the effort to request that they hopefully minimize the amount of “D.I.” and “post production” work.  It’s way too prevalent these days, and it still befuddles me why people even bother putting on make-up before a shoot when the digital imagist is still going to “make up” for everything after the shoot.  I’d  better stop this rant because I could go on forever.  Now let me tell you how it (and I) “went down” in the picture above.

Basically, I simply climbed on top of this cement structure to figure out my lines…

Once we nailed the shot…

…I simply took a deep breath and jumped down.  Simple.  Just like dat!

Tonight’s episode is uber-cool for me because I get to do a PTC (Piece to Camera) with an underwater camera starting from underneath the water…

I guess that’s about all I can (or should) say until the race airs later tonight on AXN.  Be ready for another stunning Pit Stop location too!

And when the work is done, it’s time to yell “Victory” just like Johnny Drama in Entourage!