30 April 2009

BMW X1 Concept

I just found out about this interesting new SUV (or Crossover) from BMW. This might be the result of me being a huge BMW fan, but I really think this car looks nice. Two things I don't like though: Different colored skirt and bumper, and the rear headlights could do some tweaking.

You can check out the Concept's page [Here]

28 April 2009

Pontiac Done?

Is Pontiac really done? I just read in an article that GM will announce the end of the Pontiac Brand on Monday. Not big news for Kuwait, as we don't have Pontiacs, but the situation in the States doesn't seem to get any better, especially for GM. What next? The end of GMC? Now that will affect Kuwait a bit, as I know many people like GMC's vehicles. This might seem a little too "overstretched", but don't you think if some main automotive brands start relocating to the Middle East (where there's still a market) then we would benefit a lot from it? I think the Gulf countries should pounce on that idea and start to take advantage of it. (Although the idea seems to be a little to distant in my imagination). Who knows?

Update: WOW! I feel smart now ;p ... Qatar is eyeing Porsche now!! [Link]

27 April 2009

Sony Cybershot DSC HX1 - Review

Ok, so i've had the camera for a couple of days now and would like to share some thoughts about it. First off, let me tell you that all photos in this post are taken by the Intelligent Auto Scene Mode. Also, this review doesn't include any specs, as you can find these at Sony's official website. I got the camera from Sony Style store in Columbus, OH for $499.99 (Plus around $30 tax).

I really like the design of the camera. The grip is very tight and comfortable. The nice thing about this mega-zoom, is it is actually smaller than you would expect. Now I'm not saying you can carry it in your pocket, but it is considerably smaller than regular mega-zooms and dSLR's.

Panoramic Mode
Now here is the interesting part. Panoramic mode is STUNNING. It is amazing. Unfortunately, its brilliance is hindered a little under low light conditions. None-the-less, this feature delivers stunning photos. I imagine taking panoramic photos in different stadiums and arenas. The photos will be breath-taking. Here is an example of a panoramic photo.

(Click on HERE for bigger view)

Zooming is amazing on this camera. With the autofocus button (half shutter down), a 20x zoomed photo is as clear as a 4x zoomed photo. The zoom range is very long at 20x max. Really neat for a mega-zoom.

4x Zoom

12x Zoom

20x Zoom

I really like the speed of the HX1. It is very fast between shots. My only concern is that it takes around 3 seconds to start up once you open the camera. Other than that, it is very snappy. I'm not sure if it's because of the "mechanical shutter", but it's really done a good job. I always felt that speed between shots was an aspect Sony should work on, and thankfully they did.

Now I know that macro is a setting that is usually made manually, but I'm not a pro, and so I continued using the intelligent scene mode. The camera does take pretty good macro shots. You can also tweak the contrast so you would get excellent flower shots.

Overall, I would highly recommend this camera. I definitely like the Intelligent Scene mode, as it will automatically detect the type of shot and accommodate to the conditions in a split second in order to ensure that you take those fast shots before they're gone. I like the build of this camera. It feels rugged, yet comfortable in the hand. The mechanical shutter does deliver exceptional speed. HD Video mode, which I didn't cover, is as good as it sounds at 1080 HD. Minor things: Love the articulating screen on the back, package surprisingly doesn't come with a memory stick, optical view finder is a very nice touch.

Swine Flu

I recently heard about this Swine Flu from a friend. I "googled" it and found out that it's actually a developing story. It is only recently (and by recently I mean a few days ago) discovered in humans. The source of this flu is supposedly from occasional contact with pigs and being around them. It is currently detected in Mexico and now in Southern American states. Read more about the Swine Flu [Here].

25 April 2009


I have finally purchased the Sony Cybershot DSC HX1. I'm currently fiddling with it, but so far I found out that it doesn't come with a memory stick. I got it from the Sony Style store for $499.99 (Plus $30 tax). More to come soon...

Ok, so i've had some time to snap hundreds of shots, and so
 far I'm impressed. I only tried the panoramic function once, and it looked decent. Now the only problem I faced was with low lighting. It wasn't much of a problem, but I think I should take more time and try to shoot some more under low light. The only bad thing I can think of at the moment i
s the fact that a memory stick is not included with the camera. A little disappointing, I know, almost all electronics include at least a 256MB memory stick. So I had to pass buy Best Buy to get one. Anyways, the only thing I still didn't try yet is the HD movie mode. Here are some pictures that I've taken so far (Keep in mind that I'm not a pro, but suggestions as to how I could improve my photography skills are more than welcome).

22 April 2009

MP4-24 & M3

So what have I been up to? Well, let's just say I became a car freak suddenly. I used to have memorized all car models back when I was 12 years old, and for some reason, I'm back! The weird thing is, I never loved F1 racing, but now I do. I'm looking forward to watching some races on TV. I've decided to be a Mclaren guy, simply because of Lewis Hamilton. I think he is one of the best drivers. Plus I like their new car (the MP4-24) pictured below.

As far as street-legal cars go, I've been going crazy over the BMW, and especially the M's. The M3 is a beast. I could confidently say that I have watched every single video of an M3 on Youtube! I really want an M3!

13 April 2009


I just found out about this university (which I believe is fairly new) in Saudi Arabia. I think this university has a pretty decent potential. The campus looks great (from photos). I got a flyer today at OSU which invites all students to admit to this university where they will receive a full scholarship for their studies here at OSU then get full coverage for their master's studies at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST). I think this is really good for the gulf countries. Many good universities are opening up, and it's become an alternative to studying at foreign countries. I know many parents who don't allow their kids to study abroad, and they feel that their future has been destroyed because of the limited choices they have. Not anymore. I just hope a DECENT university opens up in Kuwait...

05 April 2009

Parks and Recreation

I'm really looking forward to this new show called "Parks and Recreation". The cast looks pretty good with Amy Poehler and Rashida Jones. Interestingly, this show is from the makers of The Office and SNL, so the potential in this show is pretty high. Hope it lives up to it. The series premiere is on April 9th.