16 October 2005

AGDS / CEATEC, tiny sports cars and J-POP

Gaaah...!!! I've been swamped with work the entire week - didn't have time to update my blog at all. Plus, we've been playing loads of Quake III multiplayer in the office lately. It trully is the best multiplayer game ever, even after seven years!!!

Plus, Quake 4's coming soon... ^_^


A couple of days after returning from Japan, I had to cover the Asian Game Developers Summit in Cititel Hotel, Midvalley KL. Got to speak with a number of video game developers around the region, which was nice. This event was the first of its kind in South East Asia and, hopefully, something good came out of it. The general consensus is that there's a lot of talent in the region but that there isn't enough cooperation (i.e. information / knowledge sharing) and business going on between game companies in Malaysia, Singapore, the Phillipines and Thailand.

Anyway, I didn't really feel like writing anything else about CEATEC - seeing as I've got to write more about it for my actual job! So there.

Test driving Italian sports cars...

I went to the Fiat showroom along Jalan Ampang earlier today to try out the Fiat Coupe 20V Turbo. This is roughly what it looks like:

It's been out of production since 2000, but the cool thing is that you can still buy these brand new from Malaysian dealers! Yes, it looks a bit naff now, but it's still an amazing car, with about 225BHP from its inline 2 litre 5-cylinder engine, which is enough to propel it from 0-100km/h in less than 7 seconds and all the way to a top speed of 260km/h.

It's not all straight line performance either. The later models even came with a limited-slip diff to help distribute the power evenly to the front wheels when cornering (yes, it's a front-wheel drive car).

Best of all, it only costs RM130k brand new. A 2nd hand one will cost you less than RM80k nowadays while the non-turbo version (especially the earlier 2.0litre 4-cyl versions) can be had for just RM50k.

Unfortunately, I can't get my 6-foot-1 1/2in frame into the cockpit!

When seated in a 'proper' driving position (i.e. with the seat upright, legs bent and my right wrist able to touch the wheel at the 10 o'clock position without any stretching), my head touches the Coupe's ceiling.

To be precise, I have to open the sunroof and roll/tilt my head 45 degrees to the left in order to 'fit', with my hair emerging from the top of the car like pubes peeking out of a... you know.

Of course, I'd lose an ear if I ran over a speed bump at 100km/h in this seating position. I could always recline the seats and lower the steering wheel, but then I'd feel like I'm on an easy-rider - not particularly good for tackling corners. The clincher, though, is that the seats are already ridiculously low.

Ah well... I'll probably go for another test drive one day. The guy at the showroom didn't have any trade plates so I could only take the test car round a housing area - terrorising the stray cats and dogs in the area with short bursts of acceleration.

My God, it's a fast car. After you hit 3000rpm, the turbo kicks in and warps you into some time next week. Lovely stuff.

My first J-POP CD in 3 years...

Yes, I've not bought a single J-POP album since one by Mr Children some time ago (it's the one with Youthful days and Kuchibue on it).

Anyway, I managed to get a CD while I was in Tokyo (At the Shinkansen train station, actually):

It's a compilation album by Koda Kumi called 'Best ~first things~ with a bonus DVD containing a lot of her music videos. Turns out that she's also the girl who sang the theme for Final Fantasy X-2. Most of the songs are typical J-POP fare, but a few of them are really good. My personal favourite is a song called 'Hands'.

If you're wondering, I bought this on Yuri's recommendation. Apparently, she's the 'sexiest' J-POP artist in Japan at the moment - her music videos are rather saucy by Japanese standards. Hmmm...

I left my memory card reader in the office so I can't upload any photos. Grr...

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