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Patricia Vepari

1983 - 2005


In memory of Patricia Vepari (7 February 2005)

Patricia Vepari


In Memory of Phil Barnes - 26 March 2005

A man deeply respected by many at KGV passed away this weekend.


Mr. Phil Barnes, a teacher of maths at KGV, died in a car accident on Friday evening in Hong Kong.


I guess it's yet another reminder about how fragile life is, and how sudden someone's life can suddenly come to an end.


I never actually had Mr Barnes as a maths teacher, although he did substitute in once or twice for other teachers. I remember him primarily as an IT teacher back when I was in Year 10. He was a strict, sometimes moody teacher, but always had a sense of humour that was hard to match. His passion for mathematics and astronomy was unparalleled at KGV, and he was always on the lookout for something new to learn, something exciting to conquer, and something "cool" to present to his students.


Mr Barnes will not be forgotten by his students, past or present.

Rest in peace, and thank you.


Link to an interview with him, done in 1999 | Quotes

Link to Adrian Liu's website (scroll down -- see 27 March 2005)

Link to KGV Online News website


Mr Barnes teaching IT (1999) Mr Barnes - a sense of humour

Mr Barnes teaching IT - taken by me 15 June 1999

(during an IT class in Year 10)

His sense of humour *very* hard to match! (photographer unknown, image enhanced by Ching Sum Yuen)

(Photos can be viewed at full size by clicking on the image)


15 March 2005

(2005-03-15 01:30:10 EST) Was working on OS in the GAFF Lab in CPH, when suddenly, Lawrence noticed that the lights went out in E2. Mass panic started soon after as a hundred 3A students and quite a few 2A students came streaming out from the RTOS, Altera, and Xilinx labs in E2.


Yup, the second power failure in E2 since Friday evening. Gone with the power are the servers www.ece, Webobjects (Course Book), all the file servers hosted by ECE, the ColdFire server, and all the computers in the RTOS lab and the Altera lab. And we're supposed to finish two projects (mega huge projects at that) with the power going out in E2??


Hm, that doesn't seem right.


You can also look around and tell who's already been embittered already; 3A students left very promptly from the labs, while the 2A students were waiting around hoping to get the power restored (Ha, fat chance). In other words, we've already learnt not to expect anything substantial from this university in terms of student service.


So, with the ColdFire server down and our main source server down, there seems to be no point in continuing with RTOS ... oh wait, we can't do it even if we tried. GAFF is unaffected, but all the ECE servers are housed in E2... interestingly, none of the core infrastructure (i.e. servers, switches, etc) seem to have any UPS on them - as soon as the power went out, nobody could save their work even if they were on a laptop, and network connections abruptly disconnected.


Oh well, Campus Day is coming up later today. I guess I'll have a lot to tell the young 'uns


7 March 2005

UW Daily Bulletin, 7 March 2005:


Fire in engineering: The ring road on the east (engineering) side of campus is blocked off, and fire engines are still on the scene, following a fire that started about 4:00 this morning in Carl Pollock Hall. Al MacKenzie, UW's police chief, told me just now that the fire seems to have begun in a lab; no information is available yet about the extent of the damage.

CPH is closed for the day, the dean of engineering office announces. Students with classes in CPH today "should be prepared for their classes to be moved, rescheduled, or cancelled". Staff based in CPH have been advised not to report to work. Other engineering buildings are not affected.


On a lighter note, my body mutinied against my brain today.

Brain: “Wake up”

Body: “Yeah yeah yeah”

Brain: “No, seriously, wake up!”

Body: “Here's some endorphins… go back to sleep”

Brain: “mmmmmmm… endorphins… zzzzz”


Don't quiz me on the exact biological workings of how this stuff works... all I know is that I somehow turned off two alarm clocks at 9:30 this morning, even though one was on the other side of the room and the other (my mobile phone) was placed on the OTHER side of the room (since it was charging)


And I don't mean accidentally hit the snooze button - I mean just completely turned it off by hitting the tiny off button (on the alarm clock) and pressing a combination of three keys on my phone to turn THAT off!


Well, gotta get cracking on 324.


I also have an interview tomorrow... 50 minutes (!!!). Hope that goes well -- I want a job!


26 February 2005

So, just as a precaution, they had me get a tetanus shot (yesterday). Ouch... that really hurt. And today I'm not feeling much better either... my left arm aches, and I've been having trouble staying awake (I got my 6 hours of sleep - though I slept at 6am today).


So a total of 16 hours of time has been spent since Wednesday night to Friday night on OS... and we're still doing initialization? This OS is preettty tough. Gotta keep working and plugging... although I was almost completely unable to motivate myself today :(


At least we had a lot of fun last night. Ate at East Side Mario's, and then went to John's place for a movie night. I cannot believe how horrible some of those movies are (I don't even remember the names since I was half asleep). But the Jackie Chan one was cool -- City Hunter (城巿獵人)


Gotta try harder tmr to work work work! ECE 362 lab Monday...


24 February 2005

Ouch. I took one big knife and accidentally took a bit of my finger off. Nothing too serious... take about .75 cm down from the tip... now make a 45 degree angle up towards the fingernail, and that's how bad it was.


At least I didn't cut it all the way -- it's still attached by a flap of skin. But the photo below shows what I was working on OS with for 8 hours that day. Needless to say, it's been tough, since my pinky finger has had to take over the function of that finger and I'm typing considerably slower than usual...

the finger


At least Health Services was pretty quick to see me, and no stitches were needed, but I'll spare you the picture of my finger without the bandage.


19 February 2005

Normalcy returns... partly.


The past week has felt really weird... after all, we handed in our Software Design document for 354 last week, but it seems like an eternity ago... this university certainly warps time and our perception of it.


Midterms these past two weeks: absolutely insane. 10th: 362, 11th: 354, 15th: 324, 16th: 316, 18th: 342.


I've never felt this badly after a round of midterms. Especially after 342, I don't think anyone would have thought it to be as bad as it turned out to be. Here's a typical conversation after the exam:


"So, how'd you think?"

(long pause, wry smile developes on listener's face) "Well, you can guess. What about you?"

(hysterical laughter for 5 minutes)


Makes Lipshitz seem very tame by comparison, and his exams were preeeetty bad.


Yeah, it was THAT bad. Someone left after 15 minutes, and by 45 minutes, most people were either giving up, asleep, or just blankly flipping through pages, lacking anything else to do that would save them. Someone on MSN also noted: 324 + 342 = 666. Makes you wonder, doesn't it?


At the very least, I got to sleep without guilt for the first time in three weeks... I haven't had a long night's sleep since... last month. Today I slept a good 12 hours... and not feeling guilty at all. I think I deserved that. But now... it's back to work. I've gotta do better in the finals if I want a chance at passing 3A.


In Memory of Patricia Vepari - 7 February 2005


This is an except. Please see this page for the full text


On 4 Feb 2005, the world that was touched by Patricia was profoundly changed. But for better or for worse, we must continue on, since in leaving, she has left us something that was always there but we may never have realized:


She has brought out the best in all of us, and made us discover the value of having each other. She has brought us closer together than ever before. And one knows that, wherever she is, she is smiling and watching that this is happening.


Rest in peace, Patricia, and thank you.


23 January 2005

This morning, I opened the window... snow starts coming in because it's been built up on the INSIDE of the window screen. Bright side (no pun intended), is that the sun is really shining in and melting some of the snow.


Walking out to Mel's (having weekly brunch with Clarence) I saw this four car pile-up outside UW place. Hm, makes you wonder how they managed it... Someone must have been going too fast in order for a pile up to happen given that everyone (and I mean EVERYone) is driving really slowly today.


Another testament to how small this world REALLY is. Today it was revealed that one of my friends from General Currie is indirectly linked to Clarence (in the same class as me, no less!) The interesting thing is that had I changed out from Currie to Tomsett at the time I would have been classmates with him.


Small world :)

Speaking of small world, I bumped into Alison today! Wow, I haven't seen her in what, 2 and a half years! So weird too, since she recognized me from the window... I was sorta dazed and didn't really notice although I *did* notice her vaguely waving at me. I thought for such a long time before realizing that it was her!


Hahaha well, it was nice talkin to you again, Alison, and hopefully next time you come down to Waterloo for a visit we can sit down for a coffee or something. (Or maybe if I ever come up to Kingston...)


And for all the other KGVers, I'm sorry for being horrible at keeping in touch... :( Just no time to take up to 4 hours out of my day to travel to Toronto...


22 January 2005

Forecast for today: Low -21°C High -16°C, Snow - 30 cm expected by tonight. Wow, that's a lot of snow... good thing that we went for groceries last night and I was able to get a bit of food before being snowed in.


This cold weather, however, has allowed me to take some nice pictures. The page background you see is taken from my window - since it's a double window, the water inside the room is able to (on the outside window facing in) freeze into these nice, intricate patterns... it's made a good background though! This next picture is taken from my window (it's the frost that built up overnight)


Ice on Window


Work is piling up as it usually does... thankfully I'm (mostly) caught up for probability... now I really gotta start moving for 362 and 324...


Oh and FYI:


Heavy snowfall warning for
Kitchener - Cambridge - region of Waterloo issued

15 locally up to 30 centimetres of snow ending from west to east tonight.

This is a warning that heavy snow is imminent or occurring in these Regions.

Wind chill warning for
Kitchener - Cambridge - region of Waterloo issued

Wind chill values minus 30 to minus 40 tonight. This is a warning that extreme wind chill conditions are imminent or occurring in these regions.


Well, off to work...


15 January 2005



2 weeks into class now and already feeling a bit overwhelmed. Probably explains why I took a morning this morning to do nothing but clean the suite... people tend to notice that when my room/apartment/house gets really clean is when I don't particularly feel like doing anything else and just want to keep busy.


Oh yes, I PASSED MY WORK TERM REPORT CHECKLIST! My thanks and eternal gratitude to M.K. Barby for letting me pass, and so quickly. Now let's hope there's a good technical marker in store for me :)


Applying for jobs has gotta be the biggest, fattest waste of time there is. RIM and IBM both make you fill out external site stuff which takes bloody ages to do. And Jobmine doesn't help because of its stupid everything-opens-in-the-same-window-with-no-exceptions policy :S


Oh, and finally settled that huge OS group thing. FINALLY.


Hm, anything else?


Well, I guess I'll just bore people with what happened since last time I meaningfully said anything.


24 Dec - Dun dunn dunnnnnnn... trouble afoot (Remember, Crystal?) Tasked with salvaging a Christmas... something, it went surprisingly well even though it only turned out to be James, Ben, Lai and myself there. Lost my Rogers SIM card that day too (but thankfully, no charges were made to my phone before I phoned back to Canada to disable it)


26 Dec - Turned out to be interesting, since I went to lunch with Patrick, and then decided for some odd reason decided that the location where I was meeting Athena and Christine was in Causeway Bay -- even though I knew that Granville Rd was in TST. What the heck?! Oh well, I blame the jetlag, and the fact I've been away for too long on my lack of... words fail me.


27 Dec - Bike trip ... was lots of fun, with Desmond, Tammy, Winnie, Sue, and Ting. Pictures are being waited on from other people (except Winnie - thank you!!). This was kind of an interesting day, 6 hours of biking on and off... was pretty cool although it was almost a non-event (given that I was dropped the task of organizing something on the 23rd -- yes, a day after I got back). Oh well, it turned out to be a cool event in any case.


28 Dec - The second of two "dun dunn dunnnnnn" events... but had a good time catching up with Emily and Felda, even if there were events in the day where I didn't really want to mention.


29 Dec - Nothing much... just caught up with Dr. Liu before he had to go and finish his junior paper. Peter, as usual, was too busy with his commitments to join us :P (haha, jokes).


30 Dec - Went to get new glasses fitted, and had lunch with Vicky at California Pizza Kitchen. I swear that the waitress there recognized me from the previous night, since she went ahead and asked me if I wanted an "Iced Lemon Tea, right?" That was pretty interesting I have to say.


31 Dec - THANK YOU BEN LEE for organizing the New Year's Eve / New Year's dinner. It was great, and it was nice how you managed to persuade the manager to let us stay for the countdown. Admittedly it wasn't quite as "festive" (if one may call it that) as the crowd downstairs, it sure was fun. Peter sure was dressed warmly, in his down coat which was de-feathering(?) all over the place. Also managed to meet up with Toni, Jing and Winnie, and we ordered WAY too much food for lunch. Hopefully Winnie was able to finish most of it (eeek... just remembered there was some Swiss Chalet sitting in my fridge from last week!). And yes, we do really suck at that photo matching game we were playing, but it was pretty fun in any case :P


New Year's Elevator Pic


1 Jan - Heck, I forget what we did. Oh yeah, went to lunch with Benson and my aunts/uncles. Not much else though, it seemed very uneventful given I can't really recall anything out of it anymore.


2 Jan - Met up with Zara, and didn't do too much for the rest of the day... probably I was shopping for stuff myself or something like that. Oh yeah, went and met up with Linda, Sherman, Yingqi and CSY... although I was pretttty peeved by the end of it due to the constant camera in my face.


3 Jan - Went to KGV to be greeted by a bunch of screaming, hysterical 7P people. Found a lot of people, and found out there were so few faces I knew! It just dawned on me that, man, I've been gone from KGV for almost 3 years! Also, many surprised teachers asking if I was working there "again" (and then breathing a sigh of relief when I told them I wasn't!)... there was a lot of finding people and teachers. Finished some shopping for myself, and then packed it all back up to Canada!


4 Jan - Was at the airport by 12 for a 4:15 flight, which I thought was a bit early. Didn't really want to leave, and was phoning people like crazy on the airside of the terminal since I was bored stiff. The flight sucked pretty badly, since I didn't get the seats with the outlets, so my work term report was placed on hiatus for probably 6 hours. Amazingly uneventful, unlike the flight last year (thankfully), and the movies, most of them, were re-runs of what I saw on my way to HK! Argh! I ended up watching "Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow" (boring... I fell asleep), "Without a Paddle" (again, fell asleep in the middle), and a TV show, "Coppola's Napa valley and Belize" (interesting).


Stephan met me up at the airport after touching down, but they had to unfortunately wait over an hour because the baggage processing was being really mind numbingly slow. The girl next to me commented that she would be "waiting a long time since [she] checked in late" but I reassured her that my baggage was STILL not there, and I had practically checked in first. We both got our baggage at the same time :S Anyway, Stephan and 8E drove me to Waterloo, where I picked up my keys... and without a mobile phone or ANYthing on me (since everything was still at Patrick's place) I was stranded for a couple of hours in my room doing absolutely nothing. Finally, Puiyan, Charlton, Clarence and I moved about 3/4 of my stuff over to UWP, where I started unpacking. Pui Yan had noted that my room was "a death trap" for a few days before I cleaned it all up.


5 - 11 Jan - Work term report, work term report, work term report.......... Oh yeah, and ResNet was down for the majority of the first week. "It's your computer" they say... well HELLO... I have other test equipment that shows my computer is okay, and it's the ROUTER SIDE that's screwy. Stop blaming me when I know what the problem is!


And for some mysterious reason, the port just works at 9pm on a Friday night. Wait, my side? My computer's configuration and setup and cabling hadn't changed. So... GEE, it's RESNET's FAULT! I think there should be a computer competency test for all those requiring tech support, so techies know who to and who not to question about stuff like "Is your computer plugged in"


Which leads me to now. You're all asleep, I can see :P


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