Sunday, December 27, 2015

Chanting Amida Buddha's name will activate subconsciously when you're in a scary situation.

The chanting of Amida name is starting to take place in my 8th sense...now whenever i have a nightmare about something scary, in my dream i remember to chant, like last nite i dreamt that i was going to be electrocuted to death i was made to hold these two wires and people were watching me about to be electrocuted. I was so scared all a sudden i remembered to chant so i started chanting and then when i connected the wires, the wires burned up but i was okay and then i continued to chant and then i woke up from it...i told my uncle about the dream he said it's good it means it's in your 8th sense starting to take it's place whenever you're scared the chant in the 8th sense will shoot out.... i told him this started months ago when i dreamt about being stuck with my hip stuck in the back window of a car and the car broke the ice and was sinking into the water front first as half the car is under the water, i thought to myself..shit..i am going to die..then all a sudden i remembered to chant so i chanted in my dream..and it woke me up from the dream.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Amida Buddha, A Di Da Phat

It is taught/told (by a Vietnamese monk on youtube) that whenever we see a small creature/animal (like insects, worms, birds) if we put our hands together like praying gesture and chant/recite Nam Mo A Di Da Phat (Amida Buddha's name), we help plant a Bodhi seed (seed of enlightenment) in that creature's 8th sense (memory sense out of the 8 consciousnesses in Buddhism) which help set that creature's path to enlightenment in future lives as well planting a Bodhi seed in our own 8th sense which also helps us on the path enlightenment.  It is said that you reap what you sow, by sowing Bodhi seeds (through reciting Amida Buddha's name) rebirth in Pureland is what we reap.  Chanting Amida Buddha's name is the seed, Pureland is the fruit.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The woman I love.

A young male came to see a Buddist monk and asked why this woman he met and loved very much went and married another man.
The monk showed him a mirror.  In this magical mirror, the young male saw a young lady who died on the street, and after a young male came by and covered her body with a piece of cloth.  After a while longer, another male came and put her body in a coffin and buried her.  After seeing that, the monk told the young male.  In your past life, You were the young male who covered her with the cloth, so you only gained enough karmic seeds to meet her this life time.  The second male who buried her did more so she naturally married him, her husband is the second male shown in the mirror.
The young male left understanding understand about karma and was no longer hurt about the woman not marrying him.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

The Monk who was a hunter.

This story is from this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=advPrcgc2is
In the video there's a short story about planting karmic seeds from the time of Buddha.

During Buddha's time. There was this man who wanted to become a monk and join the monastery.  He went the the monastery and asked the head monks to shave his head so that he can become a monk.  Buddha wasn't there, he was out.  The head monks would use their insights to see the past 80 lives of this man and saw that this man did not plant any karmic seeds with Buddhism in his 80 lives so they told the man to leave.  The man was very disappointed and sad.  As he left, he was thinking of dying.  So he decided that he would run and smash his head against the rocks and die.  But before he did this, Buddha was returning and ran into him and asked him why he's so sad and wanted to die.  He told Buddha his story, and Buddha used his insights and saw his past lives and told the man to come back with Buddha to get his head shaved to become a monk.  When Buddha got back to the monastery, the head monks were surprised to see the man coming with Buddha and told Buddha that they have already used their insights to see that this man has no karmic seeds with Buddhism.  Buddha told them, you've seen his past 80 lives but have not seen his past 81 lives.  Buddha continued and told them that 81 lives ago, this man was hunter and one day in the forest while hunting, he ran into a tiger and was chased by the tiger.  The man was so afraid of the tiger, he climbed up a tree while the tiger was waiting down below.  The man remembered people saying that chanting "Buddha" plants good karmic seeds, he was so afraid even though he didn't believe in Buddha, he was desperate enough to try so he started chanting "Buddha, Buddha ...".  After repeating this chant for a while the tiger lost interest in the hunter and left.  Because of this chanting, he planted karmic seeds with Buddhism.  And so he shall be monk.  After joining the monastery, this man achieved some form of enlightenment and became an arhata.
The moral of the story is that even a person who doesn't believe in Buddha or Buddhism if recite Buddha's name will effectively plant karmic seeds which leads to enlightenment in the future.  Now imagine the effect if we wholeheartedly recite Buddha's name.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Home made beef noodles(Pho).

According to my uncle, this is for serving 10 people.

  • 5kg of beef
  • 1 ox tail
  • 2 whole onions
  • 1 ginger (100gr-120gr)
  • star anise, cinnamon (50gr-70gr) (put in a cloth bag).
  • 2 bunches of green onions
  • salt, fish sauce
  • beef broth (2 boxes)
  • dried rice noodles
Directions:

Wash green onions and chop into small chunks (0.5cm in length)

The Broth
Wash beef and ox-tail with cold water
Soak beef and ox-tail in warm water (25C-30C) with 2 tablespoon of salt for about 15 minutes to get rid of blood.
Then get rid of salt water, and wash beef and ox-tail 2nd time with cold water.
Then drain it so there's no water left.
Cut it into chunks.
Boil 10L of cold water with 2 boxes of beef broth.
When it boils, add beef and ox-tail and 1 teaspoon of salt
Peel onions cut in half and add to pot
Add ginger in pot (might want to grill the ginger first for better flavor/smell).
Add two tablespoon of fish sauce
As it boils it'll foam, scoop the foam and get rid of it.
After boiling for 45 minutes, use chopstick to poke meat to see if it's cooked.
Take out the beef and ox-tail.
Add bag of star anise and cinnamon into pot of broth
Let it boil second time then remove the bag of star anise and cinnamon and get rid of it.

The noodles
Soak dried rice noodles in cold water for 2 hours so that it expands.
Boil some cold water and add 2 drops of cooking oil in water so the noodles won't stick
When it boils, add drained pre-soaked rice noodles
Cook and test rice noodles until you see the rice noodle is soft enough to eat.
Drain water from noodles and stir noodles with chopsticks so that noodle doesn't stick together.

Ready to eat
Put rice noodles in bowl, add meat and ox-tail as much as you please.
Add some chopped green onions in bowl.
Bring broth to boiling and pour broth into bowl.

Condiments that you might use for dipping meat/ox-tail are 
Sriracha hot pepper sauce and/or Hoisin sauce.

You also might be interested in this article on: http://flower2fruit.blogspot.ca/2015/06/how-to-roll-vietnamese-salad-rolls-so.html

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Robots and the future of jobs.

After reading this article, http://www.theverge.com/2015/10/13/9521453/skycatch-komatsu-drones-construction-autonomous-vehicles

 It reminded me of a time when I played Shenmue (A Japanese Video Game), where inside the game, I got a job as a forklift driver moving crates from one location to another. It reminded me of that because back then while i was playing the game I often wondered if they ever used my signals to control a real forklift in real life and move real crates at a real possible jobsite.

 Then after reading this article, I thought if they're going through the trouble of making robo-bulldozers, instead it'd be really cool if they made a game/program where the job site is real and you could be trained then use the computer to control remotely that way they can outsource their bulldozing jobs around the world.... If such thing existed I would definitely try to apply for that job, the plus side is you don't have to travel from/to work either.

Just random thoughts, what do you think?

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Bob Marley Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art (AIA) of Bob Marley.
You can get/view this Bob Marley piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/bob-marley-abstract-tin-tran.html
You can get/view/browser other Bob Marley pieces here: bob marley art for sale

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Lotus flower Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art (AIA) of a lotus flower.
 You can view/get this art here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/lotus-flower-abstract-tin-tran.html
You can view/get/browse other lotus art here: lotus art for sale
Or you can view/get/browser other flower art here: flower art for sale

Monday, October 5, 2015

Waterfall Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an average image art (AIA) of a waterfall.
 You can get/view this image here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/waterfalls-abstract-tin-tran.html
You can get/view/browser other waterfall images here: waterfall art for sale

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Path in Forest Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art piece of path in forest.
 You can get/view this piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/forest-abstract-tin-tran.html
Or you can view/get/browser other forest pieces here: forest art for sale

Friday, October 2, 2015

Tree Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art (AIA) of multiple images of trees.
You can get/view this piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/tree-tin-tran.html
You can get/view/browse other tree pieces here: tree art for sale

Red Car Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art (AIA) of multiple images of red cars.
The result is a very abstract looking but very pleasing red car.
You can get/view this piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/red-car-abstract-tin-tran.html
You can view/get/browse other red cars here: red car art for sale

Elephant Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art of 10 different front facing elephants.
It's interesting because this elephant is somewhat more abstract and is different from all 10 source elephants.
You can view/get this piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/elephant-on-black-tin-tran.html
You can view/get/browse other elephant arts here: elephant art for sale

Egyptian Pharaoh Tutankhamun Average Image Art (AIA)

The below is an Average Image Art (AIA) from multiple images of  Pharaoh Tutankhamun
 You can view/get this piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/pharaoh-tutankhamun-tin-tran.html
Or you can view/get/browse other Egyptian arts here: pharaoh art for sale egyptian art for sale

Audrey Hepburn Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art of multiple images of Audrey Hepburn.

You can get/view this piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/audrey-hepburn-2-tin-tran.html
You can view/get/browse other Audrey Hepburn images here: audrey hepburn art for sale

Bruce Lee Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art of multiple images of Bruce Lee.
You can view/get this piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/bruce-lee-in-cinema-tin-tran.html
Or you can view/get/browse other Bruce Lee arts here: bruce lee art for sale

John Lennon Average Image Art (AIA)

This is an Average Image Art of John Lennon (composed from 7 different images of John Lennon).
You can get/view this Average Image Art piece here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/john-lennon-tin-tran.html
You can get/view/browse other John Lennon art pieces here: john lennon art for sale

Buddha Average Image Art (AIA)

The is an Average Image Art (AIA) of 12 different images of buddha.
You can get/view this image here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/amida-buddha-tin-tran.html
You can get/view/browse other Buddha images here: buddha art for sale

Sunset Average Image Art (AIA)

The below is the Average Image Art (AIA) of 7 different sunsets.
It's interesting to notice that even though they are photos of the sunset, this one turned out interestingly abstract like an abstract painting/rendition of a sunset.
You can get/view this Average Image Art of the sunset here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/sunset-tin-tran.html

You can get/view/browse other Sunset images here: sunset art for sale

Jesus Average Image Art (AIA)

The following is the resulting image of combining 10 different Jesus' paintings together.
It's beautiful isn't? That's what Average Image Art does, it gives an abstract/surreal look.  Because some parts are sharp such as the eyes, because they were used to align the images.  The hair gets a little abstract, and the hands in different positions are even more abstract.
You can get/view more of this art piece from here: http://fineartamerica.com/featured/jesus-tin-tran.html
To get/view/browse other Jesus' art you can get it here: jesus art for sale

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Average Image Art creations (AIAs).

Hi,
I have created a facebook page where I share my collection of Average Image Art (AIA) pieces.
The Page is here: https://www.facebook.com/Average-Image-Art-AIA-841279035990311/
By using different images of similar subject, and aligning the same features to make that feature sharp and other features more abstracted we get really interesting results that look different and unique from original input images.
Here's an AIA piece of averaging 7 different images of Pharaoh Tutankhanmun.

The result is sometimes very abstract if the source images used are very different in perspective.
Or if the source images are similar you something like above where the eyes are very sharp and in focus. and everything else has abstract looking transparencies.
Here's an a very abstract example of a red car (also from 7 different images of red cars at similar but slightly different perspectives, the center of front and back wheels were used to align).
I hope you enjoy these pieces, and maybe even create your own to share on my facebook page.
Cheers.

You can also see more of these AIAs (Average Image Arts) here: http://tin-tran.artistwebsites.com/
If you compose some AIAs of your own, please share on my facebook page here: Average-Image-Art-AIA Facebook Page

Friday, September 25, 2015

YOUR SUPER VILLIAN NAME AND TITLE!

This is the interactive version of this link: Your Super Villian name and Title
The interactive version is here: Interactive Program to get your Super Villian Name and Title
The interactive version is just like the image shown in 1st link above but it's a little program that will prompt you for your first name, last name, day of month you were born and middle name (if you have one) if not just enter blank.  And it'll tell you what your Super Villian Name and Title is.
 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Neural Network Generated Artwork.

To generate your own Neural Network Generated Artwork.
You need 2 images.
One is your original art work, and the other is the style you want to copy.
You upload it to https://www.instapainting.com/ai-painter
and then wait for them to send you an email when it's done thinking/processing/painting.

What's really interesting is that if you use the same input images and repeat the process, you won't get the same result.  Just like how us humans paint, we can't paint an image identically every time like a printer, the neural network generated artwork is slightly different each time you submit.

Below is an animation of 7 frames Neural Network Generated Artwork where same input images have been used but the 7 frames are slightly different but generally still represent the same painting.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

How to make my own deep dream images/video

to make your own deep dream images, you can just go to deepdreamgenerator.com.

To make video(s) of deep dream images like a video where it keeps zooming in, you can keep feeding deepdreamgenerator.com your image and use the result as input again and feed it through again and zoom/scale up each time and generate frames and put them all together using windows movie maker.

Or if you don't want to sit there and manually upload to deepdreamgenerator.com, you can use a script i wrote to automatically submit to deepdreamgenerator.com and scale up your image at each zoom step.

The script is python and requires you to install some additional packages for python and imageMagick (used for the scaling/zooming step).

Detailed instructions on how to use the script and what to install can be found here: http://gimpchat.com/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=13030

Thursday, August 20, 2015

We're all blinds.

If everyone on earth was blind, and one person could see and then that person died. Thousands of years pass, it's difficult to believe that there once existed a person that could see because everyone is currently blind, all that's left are stories told in books of this one person that could see (which would seem miraculous). If this person saw stars and the moon, and the sun, and described them to all the blind people... people would have a hard time believing in the moon and stars now because they can't feel them, they would only be able to feel the warmth of the sun. And if asked why don't they believe in the stars and the moon, most blind people would say that they can't feel them so they're not there. But what if these people were told that they are blind and so they can't see, they would have a hard time believing in the ability to see as there isn't a person around who can see.

I truly believe there are people who can see, the first person that comes to mind is Buddha, the other is Jesus Christ, there might be more... and we're all blinded by our worldly desires.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

How my mom makes Spring rolls

Ingredients:
-------------
0.5 bbq/roasted chicken
1 pound of peeled raw shrimp (my mom usually buy the raw ones with shell and peel them herself).
25 grams of black fungus
200 grams of cabbage
200 grams jaicama
1 whole onion
2 eggs
salt, pepper, sugar as desired
-------------------------------------
Steps:
--------------
1- Soak black fungus in water for about 1 hour then cut them up finely.
2- Cut Onion finely as well.
3- Cut up Cabbage finely as well. Peel and cut up Jaicama finely as well.
4- Fry the finely cut Jaicama with a little oil to let some of water evaporate so it's not too wet... Or if you don't want to fry it you can just squeeze the finely cut Jaicama with your hand to get rid of excess water/juice.
6 - Use blender to chop up shrimp finely (the blended shrimp will help to stick all ingredients together).
7 - Rip chicken into small pieces while deboning it.
8- Mix all ingredients together.
9- Roll mixture inside spring roll wraps (spring roll skins [DOLL SPRING brand]) you can view this image to see how to roll them.
10- Seal the edges with raw egg whites (or flour mixed with water and microwave so it's like glue).
11- Deep fry spring rolls at medium heat about few minutes until yellow/golden appearance.

Can serve with lettuce and fish sauce dip (see below)
----------------------------------------------------------
Fish sauce dip:
------------------
1/3 cup of fish sauce
1 cup of hot water
1 teaspoon of sugar (as desired)
1 teaspoon of cyder vinegar or lemon juice
add hot pepper as desired
mix it all together to make fish sauce dip.



Saturday, August 15, 2015

How my mom makes homemade tofu.

200 grams of soybean
2 litres of water
1 teaspoon of salt
3 table spoon of vinegar
1.5 cup of hot water

1 - Soak the soybean in (cool) water overnight (for at least 12 hours or more) to soften the beans.
2 - Process them in a blender (1 cup of soft soybean + 2 cups of water each time) on high speed for  2 minutes, until they're completely pureed.
3 - Use cheese-cloth to drain it to extract the raw milk, toss away the residue (okara, bean pulp) (or you can look up other recipes if you want to do something with the okara)
5 - Mix 0.5 cup of the raw milk with teaspoon of salt.
4 - Boil the rest of the raw milk, when it's about to boil, you see steam coming up, mix in the 0.5 cup mixture from step 5 with the rest of steaming raw milk.
5 - When it starts to boil, reduce heat to medium, watch it CAREFULLY or it'll boil/flow over.
6 - After 1 minute, take it off the stove
7 -  To make sour water, mix 3 tablespoon of vinegar with 1.5 cup of hot water.
8 - Pour 0.5 cup of sour water into the boiled milk, use spatula to stir evenly, cover lid to keep it hot, after 5 minutes pour another 0.5 cup of sour water, after another 5 minutes, pour another 0.5 cup of sour water.
Wait a few minutes, we will see tofu separate from water (water becomes clear yellowish).
9 - Use cheese-cloth to put in a plastic basket or home-made wooden mold with holes on the sides
for water to drain.  Pour the unpressed tofu with clear yellowish water into the cheese-cloth slowly to let the yellowish clear water to drain and you're left with tofu inside cheese-cloth.  Use something heavy like as pot of weight on top to squeeze out extra water, after a few minutes we will have raw tofu.
10 - Cut in pieces, put tofu in cold water and wait until its cold, and put in plastic containers, keep in fridge can keep up to a week (change water every day).
 11 - Use raw tofu to make different dishes with other recipes, DO NOT EAT RAW TOFU.

My mom would often deep fry the tofu and dip the tofu (while it's hot) very quickly into soy sauce (4 parts soy sauce, 1 part water with some chopped up green onions) and takes it out instantly (only a half dunk so half the piece of tofu would touch the soy sauce) because it's hot if you soak it too long, it'll soak up a lot of soy and be too much soy/salty.  Her friends from church would sometimes eat the deep fried tofu with ketchup if they're plain (not already soy sauced).

Soybean milk:
-------------------
100 grams of soybean
1 litre of water
a little vanilla
Soak beans and process soybean in a blender (same way like tofu) but we must cook well.
Wait till it boils, reduce heat to low and cook for about 5 more minutes, if we don't cook well it becomes poisonous.
 --------------------------------------
The big mold/form
Sometimes my mom would make 3 times the amount mentioned in the recipe so she uses the bigger wooden mold/form instead of a plastic strainer to press the tofu.  The mold/form we have in image below.... there's a separated base just for the form to sit on, and a top piece (with two hangers hook for my mom to easily lift the top piece when done) that fits inside the form/mold, and she usually uses vinegar plastic containers filled will water for weight and sets them on the top piece to give it some weight so it would press down on the tofu inside cheese-cloth. Holes are drilled on the sides for the clear yellowish water to drain quickly.  It's made out of scrap wood that's why it's all uneven. We have never have more tofu than the mold can hold so the top piece usually fits in and goes down about half the height of the form/mold.  The form/mold is about 1 hand span wide and 2.5 hand span in length.




Friday, August 14, 2015

What Buddha says about desires.

 I read this story long time ago (I think it was when i was going to University).  Now I try to find it on the internet and couldn't find it.
The story is this.
A king once asked Buddha: "Isn't good to be born with good karma, be rich, powerful, healthy and marry beatiful wife and have obedient kids?".  Buddha said something like: "It feels good to scratch mosquito bites, but it's greater to not have the bites in the first place."  Meaning our worldly desires are like mosquito bites, we seek all sorts of things to fulfill our desires, like scratching the bites.  To be free of worldly desires is like not being bitten by mosquitoes.  Because we all have worldly desires, it's hard for us to understand what it is like to be free of desires, that is why Buddha gave the above analogy.
 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tôi đọc chuyện này lâu lắm rồi (hồi con Đại học thì phải) giờ tìm trên Internet mà không thấy.  Chuyện kể xưa, có vị vua hỏi Đức Phật, "Nếu sanh ra gieo nhân quả tốt, được làm người giàu có, sức khỏe lẫn vật chất, cưới được vợ đẹp, con ngoan không tốt sao?  Đức Phật trả lời tựa tựa như thế này: "Nếu bị muỗi cắn, gãi thì cảm thấy đã ngứa, nhưng nếu không bị muỗi cắn từ lúc đầu thì vẫn hơn".  Ý muốn những ước vọng của chúng ta như bị muỗi cắn, chúng ta muốn gãi là tìm kiếm đủ thứ đễ đã ngứa, nhưng nếu không có khát vọng nữa thì là tự do như không bị muỗi cắn vậy.  Vì chúng ta có ước vọng nên chúng ta không hiểu tự do không ước vọng là cảm giác như thế nào nên Đức Phật đã đưa ra thí dụ trên.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Help design a video game and have your name displayed on that portion of the video game.

Help us design a portion (small part(s)) of a video game.
And in return, you get your name displayed on that portion of the video game.

Before you can help us design, try out the game mechanics with this android WIP (work in progress)
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tintran.joyrun

We want the game to be really simple, tap anywhere on screen to jump.
You can jump over lava or jump on land platforms to jump over longer parts of lava.
The game has 4 arrow icons.
If your hero touches the down arrow icon, he shrinks to half his normal size and his jump is lower but he is now shorter, so he can go under low lying platforms.
If your hero touches the up arrow icon, he grows back to his normal size and his jump is normal height so he can jump on to platforms that half-sized hero can't.
If your hero touches the left arrow, he will travel backward (toward the left of the screen).
If your hero touches the right arrow, he will travel forward (toward the right of the screen).
That's it, that's all the game mechanics.

We want to create a really long level composed of portions/designs by users like you from around the world.
We want to display your name somewhere on the portion(s)/design(s) that you create/submit (it might be over a land piece/lava or just hovering on black background).
If you have a design(s) and you submit it/them and it/they is/are not yet in the game, we'll add it/them for sure and make sure your name appears in it/them.

You can then tell your friend(s) about the game and have them play the game and see your name as proof of your contribution along with hopefully many others around the world.

Our hope is that the game will evolve into a really long level that requires memorization in order to beat it and contributer's names are clues to memorization.

To submit your design, create a forum user account and submit/reply to the post in the link below (you should specify a name to be displayed in the game, if different from your forum user name, otherwise your forum user name will be displayed):
http://forums.gamesalad.com/discussion/88322/wondering-if-i-can-come-up-with-enough-variations-to-keep-the-level-entertaining-and-hopefully-long

This game is purely experimentally as we want it to evolve over time (as it gets longer) purely on user contributions.

Share with your friends to give them the opportunity to have their designs submitted and their names displayed in the game as well.

Your design(s) can be as simple as the below images (as long as you get the idea across, so that we can build the game to include that design(s)):
Higher Ground

Small guy passage
If you wish to be clearer, you can include a short discription for example: 1) for Higher ground image above, "Move backwards, jump on platform Move forward, jump on higher platform" 2) for Small guy passage, "Touch down arrow to shrink but jum over up arrow in order to stay half-size (small) to dodge under low lying platform."

You can freely use these these images to compose your design(s)/portion(s):
lava

land/platforms
up

down

right

left


We hope that you come up with interesting variations/placements of these land/lava/arrows to keep the game entertaining/challenging.

Thank you for reading and Thanks in advance for submitting design(s).

Sunday, June 28, 2015

How to draw quickly draw 3 arcs with rounded end points in GIMP.

First draw 3 circles (I selected a large circle turned that into a path, shrunk selection by 40 pixels in this example and turned that into a path, then shrunk again 40 pixels and turned that into a path, then selected none, stroked all 3 paths using brush size 20
Free select tool and cut away unwanted parts.
Using the same brush (size 20 pixels and round brush) just dot the end points to make it look round. and That's it! :)
There's even a better way to produce perfect circles without artifacts using offnuts' script to create perfect circles that will produce something like this
more details here: http://gimpchat.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=12739

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Do you have young kid(s) about 2 years of age?

Do you have kid(s) about 2 years of age or a little older that are trying to learn the alphabet?
If so, then we have a great app for your kid(s).

This is my first paid app, only $1.80 CAD (Google Play keeps 30% so I make about $1.25 CAD).
 The app can be purchased on Google play at the below link
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sky_learn.first.alphabet
Sky-Learn Alphabet app teaches kids the alphabet by letting kid(s) discover through trial and error and positive reinforcement.
1st Phase of the app shows 3 random pictured icons, it'll speak out something like "A is for Apple" and the kid has to touch the correct icon to progress (a "Ding Ding" bell will sound and 3 points are awarded).
This repeats for random characters (there are 3 different items for each character so with a total of 78 beautiful pictured icons).
If the wrong one is selected an unpleasant buzzer will sound and 3 points are taken away.  Through trial and error, kid(s) will eventually get the right one and getting the "Ding Ding" bell is a positive reinforcement it'll help kids to remember the correct icons on later trials/plays.
When 300 points are reached.
The game/app will kick into 2nd phase which will sound out "Capital A" and the kid has to select the capital A out of 3 icons of capital letters.
If an incorrect letter is selected, it'll start back at "Capital A" until Capital Z is reached.
After which point, the app/game will kick into phase 3 where small a has to be selected and so on all the way to small z (similar like phase 2, except instead of capital letters, it's small letters).
If small z is reached. The game is over and the kid has the option to replay if they touch the "Play Again!" button.

Through repeated plays and positive reinforcement, kids will get better at recognizing letters of the alphabet.

I called it sky learn because icons slowly float up from the bottom of screen with a blue sky back ground with clouds floating upward as well it feels like you're falling slowly and if correct icon is not selected in time and the icons travel past the top of screen, they'll start at bottom again so kid(s) will have multiple opportunities to select the right one.  There's no way to lose the game unless you purposely keep selecting the wrong one in which case you'll just end up with a really large negative score but the game won't end so you can still play and try to get 300 points starting from a low number.
I wanted to keep everything simple because it's intended for kids.
There's also a speech bubble in lower left of the screen, it's for when kids misheard the speech part, they can touch the speech bubble to repeat what they're supposed to select.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Sky-learn a prototype app to teach children alphabet/numbers/shapes/colors and things(animals and things)

Sky-learn is a prototype app.
With alphabet/numbers/shapes/colors and things (floating up in the sky) intending to teach young children to recognize them based on speech.
The app will speak a letter/number/shape/color or thing(animal or thing) and the child has to click on right icon out of 3 possible icons.  If the child clicks/touches the right one a "Ding Ding" bell will sound and the child gets 3 points (1 point for each icon).  If the child clicks/touches the wrong icon, a "Buzz" will sound indicating it's incorrect and 1 point is taken away.
If the child did not hear the speech the first time, the child can click on the speech bubble located at the lower left hand side of game screen area.  And the speech of the letter/number/shape/color or thing will repeat again.
Here's a video capture of the app/game in action.

This app could also be used for non-english speakers to teach them letters/numbers/colors/shapes and things English.

Later on, i want to build more difficulty by showing words instead of pictures so that the users/kids can learn to recognize words, the first essential blocks of learning how to read.

You can try out this prototype here: http://arcade.gamesalad.com/games/131497

I am starting a kickstarter project to get funding for getting the GameSalad Pro version which will me to publish to mobile apps such as android.  Hopefully, i'll get enough funding.  I want to make the app/game available for free, because it's intended to be educational and education should be as free as possible.

If you'd like to back this project, you can back it here: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/trandoductin/sky-learn-an-educational-app-for-young-children

Friday, June 12, 2015

The White cow and the talking celery stick

Once up a time, there was boy who went to McDonalds to get some hamburgers. On the way, he tripped and fell....He looked up and there was a beautiful white cow appearing over his head saying: "Why would you eat us?" The boy said: "Because your meat is just too tasty".  The white cow said: "But those cows you eat are reincarnations of your long passed relatives as well".  "What are you fucking kidding me?" The white cow said: "Yes, I am just fucking with you. get up and go grab your hamburgers, kid!".  The boy got up and the white cow disappeared.
On the way he met a little girl who was a vegetarian who was going to 7/11 for a slurpee.  The boy told the girl the story how he met the white cow.  The girl was surprised at the story because she too tripped and fell and she looked up and saw a large talking celery stick and said: "Why would you eat us?" and she said: "You're not too tasty but i don't eat beef so I have to eat you".  The talking celery stick said: "But don't you know celery sticks are long passed relatives of the cows?" "You mean cows die and grow into celery sticks?".  The celery said: "No not really, i was just fucking with you!".  The young boy and the girl decided that food should be punished by being eaten because food always trying to fuck with them even appearing as talking entities while they have a mild concussion.  The two of them grew up and and got married and had kids and in return for messing with them when they were younger, the two of them fed their kids a lot of beef and celery sticks.. the end.

"Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" mythical characters in movies (Ong To Ba Nguyet)

Old tale:
During the Tang Dynasty, there was a young man named Vi Co who was looking for a wife.
One night, he saw an old man leaning against a large bag reading a book under the moonlight.
He talked to the man, and the old man said: "This book has written names of married people
and this bag contains pink threads that are used to tie the legs of people who are destined to marry each other and cannot be untied".
Vi Co asked the old man: "Who shall I marry?".
The old man pointed at a three year old girl in the arms of a blind woman who was bringing vegetables to
sell at the market and said: "That's your wife!".
Vi Co got very mad and instructed his servants to stab the little girl.
But the little girl was only wounded and survived.
Fourteen years later, apparently Vi Co married the young girl.
The name "old man moon" is translated from the "old moon".
Two names of "Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" also came from this old tale.
According the myth, "Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" travel as a couple, and they have the task
of tying the legs of couples who are destined to marry each other with pink threads.
Couples who are in love would sometimes pray to "Silk Man" and "Moon Lady" to have their legs tied together with pink thread.
Because it's a myth, "Silk man" and "Moon Lady" and their threads are not supposed to be visible to
the naked eye but unless they want to appear to regular people (according to the movies).

Saturday, June 6, 2015

How to roll Vietnamese Salad Rolls so the filling doesn't fall out after the first bite.

So you try to make your own home-made Vietnamese Salad Rolls and the filling keeps falling out after you take a first bite and try to dip again and filling falls into the dipping and it makes a mess.
Here's how you roll it so that the filling doesn't fall out.
Instead of trying to roll all the filling together in one go, try spreading out the filling on the rice paper and roll the rice paper along with the filling so that the rice paper gives the middle of roll some structure so the filling doesn't fall out.

Here's a diagram of the difference between rolling it in one go and rolling the rice paper along with the filling.  Try to roll like diagram B.
There you have it, a simple trick that prevents the filling from falling out after you try take the first bite and try to dip again.  I was rolling them like diagram A for years and had to suffer from the annoyance of the filling falling out into my dipping.  Then I discovered how to roll them like diagram B and from then on, my filling never fell out anymore.  Thought I'd share this trick to fellow Salad Rolls lovers out there.

Here's a link to a recipe for Vietnames Salad Rolls that my friend shared on facebook, just in case you wanted a recipe: http://www.howdoesshe.com/vietnamese-salad-rolls-with-peanut-sauce/

Thursday, June 4, 2015

How to hatch an image in GIMP

I posted a similar post but much simpler about my Auto Hatch Layers script on GIMP LEARN forum here --> Hatching an image in GIMP Script

Inside GIMP, you can manually hatch an image by creating a hatch pattern then copying that pattern into the clipboard and simply dragging that pattern onto a selection to fill the selection with that pattern repeatedly.

Or you also manually hatch an image with the help of a script I wrote to help you with the manual process, you'll just have to select the area (you might have reduced the number of colors of your image) maybe of a specific color, and then run the script.  And the script will allow you to specify 2 colors, one is the hatch color, the other is hatch color number 2 or can also be referred to as hatch background (not always, since my script will flip the colors around if your hatch width percentage is greater than 50%, I did this so that for circles patterns it'll always fit inside a grid of the hatch pattern).   The script will allow you to choose a pattern of "Lines","Squares","Circles","Triangles","Zigzags","Fans","Rings", or "Hollow Squares".
You can specify hatch width percentage so if you want gray 50%, you can specify hatch colors of White and Black and use hatch width percentage of 50%.  So what that will do is it'll give you a hatch pattern that has 50% white over black hatch pattern.
This script is useful if you really want to control every detail of your hatching of your image(s).  You can manually calculate/figure out what color you want but are happy with the 8 built patterns.
Here's the script's options:
 You can specify rotate angle to rotate the hatch pattern to a certain angle (default is 45).  And the hatch Grid Width and Height defines size of hatch square in pixels.  If you make it 5 minimum it'll be a fine hatch, if you make it larger it'll be courser.
Okay enough talk about the script.  You should just download the Hatch Selection Layer script and try it out for yourself.

Now onto something more AUTOMATED!  What if you don't want to do the manual work of defining every color manually? All the simple but tedious math.  Well I wrote a script for that too.
You just have to have an image in RGB mode.
You'll have to select number of colors/hatch you want.  This script will reduce the number of colors of your image down to the number of specified hatches and then automatically hatch your whole image.
Here's the script's options:
You can turn on/off each of the hatch patterns (there's 8 right now) but if none is turned on, it'll default to hatching with "Lines". So for an image of at least 8 colors/hatches you have 255 different ways to choose your Hatch patterns (2^8, 256 but because we don't count the option of having everything turned off).
And you have the option to "Break into color components instead of hatching over black".  What that option does is what it says, it'll try to break your image's color into 2 colors that when combine give the original color so that when possible you have colors other than one of them being black.  If you turn off this option, your hatch pattern will always be a single color over black, if you turn on this option, it'll try to break out Red, Green, or Blue value whichever is the highest out into it's own to be the second color and the other 2 channels combine to give you your first color, unless the highest component cannot be fully represented in the second color then some of that value will be added back to the first color of the hatch so that the combined values of the hatch represents the original color.  There was some really simple but tedious math involved in this when i was writing the script.
"Hatch Start Angle" specifies the start angle of the first hatch pattern.  So if you specify "Hatch Increment Angle For Each Hatch" that is greater than zero.  Each hatch pattern will be incrementally rotating that much starting at the Starting Angle.  If you want all your hatches the same angle, just use zero and they'll all be using "Hatch Start Angle".  And similarly to the manual script above, you can specify the your hatch to be fine or course by chaning the "Hatch Grid Width and Height" (in pixels).
Okay enough talk about the script, You can download the Auto Hatch Layers Script and start playing with it.
To use these scripts: You'll just have to copy the .scm file into your GIMP's Scripts folder and restart GIMP, and they'll be available under Script-Fu/Create New/Auto Hatch Layers Script or Script-Fu/Create New/Hatch Selection Layer depending on which one you're choosing to use.

Here's an example image that I wanted to apply my "Auto Hatch Layers" script on (I just found on the internet, searched for "Snowwhite" images)
And here's the out come when I chose ticked on just "Circles" and "Rings" and specified number of hatches as 30 (so it reduced my image down to 30 colors before it applied the hatches). As you can see the below only have circles and rings pattern.

 Here's a close-up of the above image (just so you can see the hatch patterns easier).

And finally I want to show you some samples of the 8 built hatch patterns (white over black at 50%)
Depending on the percentage, the shapes do shrink to represent that percentage.
Samples of white over black at 50% (click to see details)


Sunday, May 24, 2015

A Canadian Quick Challenge

Do you play A) Lotto 6/49 B) LottoMax C) BOTH?
You can answer this Quick Challenge in the comment section on the Lotto Noodle's facebook post found here:https://www.facebook.com/1510787015861044/photos/a.1527630524176693.1073741830.1510787015861044/1584644148475330/

An American Quick Challenge

Do you play play A)Mega Millions B)Powerball C)Both?
You can answer this quick challenge on the Lotto Noodle's facebook post found here:
https://www.facebook.com/1510787015861044/photos/a.1527630524176693.1073741830.1510787015861044/1584643878475357/

I got over 150 facebook likes on one of my pages in one week without advertising.

The page is Lotto Noodle facebook page
In one week, (specifically last week, May 16 2015) I jumped from about 60 likes to 215 likes.
Originally the 60 likes were from advertising on facebook months ago, it costed me about $20 USD to get those likes...
I stopped advertising, then months later I don't know what i did but last week it jumped to 215 likes.
That's really sweet if it continued. but I am afraid it stopped.
This week i have not a single like.
I don't know what changed... I really wished I knew the source of these likes so hopefully i can do more of the same to promote that page (or other pages).

I even posted something asking where/how my likers found my page. and sadly no one is answering my post so far.

This is a little frustrating.  Not knowing the source of those likes.

So I am trying a new thing like to get attention of my likers when it shows up on the feed by using an image like below (hopefully it'll get people answering).

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

How to create your facebook profile/cover images so that they look like one image together (in GIMP)

Go to this link: profile/cover template
click on image in comment that says "hi res click below image"
This will open the comment image in theatre mode.
Right click the image in theatre mode and click on "View Image".
Now you can right click and "Save Image As" or "Copy Image".

If you copied the template, go to GIMP and "Paste as new image".  If you saved it, just open the template in GIMP.


Open an image of your choice or grab one from internet (the choice is yours) as new image.

Image->Scale Image and set width to be 1356 pixels (same width as the template) [or if you your image is really wide, scale it to have the same height as template (540 pixels)]
                               

Ctrl-a to select all of this image.  Ctrl-c to copy this whole image.
Then go to image with template, and Edit->Paste as->New Layer.
Use the Move tool to move this layer into the wanted position (depends on which parts you want to see in your cover/profile combination, while you're moving image around, you can press the Ctrl key after clicking on your mouse to align it to horizontal or vertical positions).
Now you should have two layers in your template image, one contains the template, the other contains the image. Adjust the top layer to have opacity of 50%(so that you can see the template through the image of choice).
 Here I just renamed the layers to some names that I can easily identify. You don't have to rename them after all, we're just working with 2 layers. Now click on the layer with template (bottom layer) and use the Fuzzy select tool.  Click on blue area.  Hold down Shift key, click on yellow area to add selection of yellow area to blue area.
Now that we have the yellow and blue areas selected.  Click on the layer with the image of choice (top layer).  Ctrl-c to copy. Edit->Paste as-> New Image. And save this image to be used as your cover image.
Now go back to image that we were working with (image with 2 layers).
Click on the template layer (bottom layer).
Use Fuzzy Select tool to click on Yellow area.
Hold down Shift, click on Red area to add red area to Yellow area.
Click on top layer (layer with image of choice). Ctrl-c to copy.  Edit->Paste as->New Image.  And save this image to be used as your profile image.
Now, we're done and we have a cover image and a profile image.

Go to facebook and change your profile and cover images to use these images.
And you should have something that looks like this.
Don't forget to share your beautiful designs on Profile-Image-and-Cover-Image-Combination facebook page