Semester 2 Is Here


Today we went over our scores on the final, and then worked on getting our second page started. During winter break, I went to Big Bear to go tubing, and then went to an oncheon/hotel at Palm Springs. On the last 3 or so days of winter break, I got sick while finishing my AP Chem homework, so now I feel miserable. This year, I want to work more on making fun toys like my new sword that I will be fabricating soon.


Today I went home early because I got sick yesterday. I slept a lot.


Today we had a Sketchup excercise in which we used the "move" tool to build a stairway to heaven out of Jenga blocks. My stairway was made of 16,384 Jenga blocks, and was 682 feet and 8 inches tall. While building the stairway, my laptop froze a lot, and it was pretty funny to se who could build the tallest stairway. Tyler had the tallest bridge, with approximately 70,000 Jenga blocks.


Today I worked on updating my website. The first year people were learning about how to set up a second page that would link to their semester 1 website, and I fiddled with organizing my website folders. Also, I made the cross section of a mortar and pestle that I want to turn using my new set of french curves that I got on Friday.


Today we had a Wednesday Challenge where we had to cut out a 1 foot square of cardboard. Since my partner Keilah and I have done this challenge before, we are confident of victory. When Keilah was gone, I drew on the square. :3

1 Foot Square


Today we went over the results of the Wednesday Challenge. Keilah and I ended up winning the challenge :D. Also, we went over our websites and how to organize our website files. Also, I played around a lot on I will post at least 1 image that I create every day :D.


Today there was an invasion by the Transformers, so there was a power outage for us. As a result, we couldn't really do anything and I just played on weavesilk.


Today we worked as a class to get everyone's websited up to par and to make sure that Filezilla, among other things, were up and running. Also I drew lots of things over the weekend and effectively learned how to do video editing in about 4 hours of dicking around. Also. I worked on the sketchup for a cardboard car that we will be fabricating to roll down a 4 meter long ramp.


Today we had aWednesday Challenge. The objective of the challenge was to design a handout for the Robotics competition that can be made cheaply (<50 cents per unit) and fast. My design was a small catapult made of 1 inch and 1/2 inch steel square tubing. Each unit costs about 49 cents and can be made from raw materials in a matter of minutes. By the end of the period, I managed to finish most of the Sketchup for my idea.

Robotics Handout


Today we worked more on the Wednesday Challenge from yesterday. I was able to finish the sketchup halfway through the period, and persented my idea at the end of the period along with the other groups. Other than my idea, I also like Keilah, Cole, Kevin, and Ian's idea of a trading card game that has the various competition robots and floor obstacles.


Today we presented the rest of the handout ideas, and then had a blind vote on whose idea was the coolest. As expected, my idea was in second, with the trading card idea having a dominant lead as cooledt idea.


Today we started making cardboard cars to roll down the ramp in the robotics room. Since we did this last year, I already have a decent idea of what I'm going to do. I even finished the cad by the end of the period.


Today I finished the body of the car, and brought a circle cutter to make wheels for my car. This time around, I have a new idea for my axle/wheels setup that will incorporate compound bushings/bearings/rotational defrictionating actuationers/something/idk/I give up explaining.


Today we had a Wednesday Challenge where we used a limited amount of postit notes to create a object that would roll down as much of the ramp that the cardboard cars will be rolling down as possible. My team, consisting of myself, Kelah, Cole, and Ian, only received 1 postit note, but still took first place with a distance of 11'4" down the 15' ramp.

Postit Note Roller


Today I finished making my car, and spent the rest of the period doing test runs and making tweaks. I realized that I hd misaligned my axles, and the car car had a tendency to turn sharply to the left about half way down the ramp. As a result, I poked some new axle holes in the car, and then used a straw to incorporate a way to adjust the angles of the front axle of the car. now, I am able to cant my wheels closer together like this: \-/, which will hopefully make the car roll straighter down the ramp.


Today I worked on getting my website up to date, and then worked for the rest of the period trying to get Filezilla to work for me. Unfortunately, it decided that today would be a great day to just stop working and not let me update my website. :/


Today we had a Sketchup exercise where we built a small structure using 6 jenga blocks, and then replicated it in Sketchup primarily using the rotate tool. I finished it early, so I had time to work on a fletching jig that I was also designing in Sketchup.


Today was the last day to work on our cardboard cars before the competition to see whose car would go down the ramp the fartherst. I made some final tweaks on my car, and I'm now pretty confident that I will place in the top 3.


Today we had a Wednesday Challenge where we were to redo the previous Wednesday Challenge of designing a handout for the robotics competition. My idea was to incorporate the previous years' handouts idea of a kendama-esque toy. My total came out to be just under 32 cents, so I am pretty happy with it.


Today we presented out ideas from the Wednesday Challenge. Ian's team's upgraded card game won.

Robotics Handouts Round 2


Today we had the competition to see whose cardboard car would go down the ramp the farthest. I got an average score of about 13' 8" out of 15 feet, mainly because I had to use the first of my 3 tries to calibrate my future launches, which were both a full 15 feet.


Today I mainly just worked on my website because Dr. Neato wasn't here. I also worked a lot on links to connect my various websites and it was terrifying to try and find out how everything connects and how to link folders in other sublevels of folders that were all in a bigger folder that had separate subfolders... I hope I didn't lose anyone :P


Today we had a Wednesday Challenge where we thought of ways to fix the broken part of the double doors in the back of the classroom, which keep the door open. I was with Cole, Keilah, and Kevin. Our idea was a type of gate latch that would be mounted on the back of the door, and could be operated with one hand.

Door Stopper


Today we presented our ideas for fixing the double doors. After everyone presented, I realized that most of us had the same general idea of mounting some kind of latch. The winner will most likey be whoever had the most refined idea, ie. a Sketchup/concept sketches.


Today we discussed the results for the Wednesday Challenge.The winners were Nick's group with a string and rings, and Andrew's group, with a magnetic door latch in place of the original one on the floor. Also, we discussed and watched an interview about how scientists found their first gravitational waves, evidence leading towards confirmation of Einstein's Theory of Relativity.


Today Dr. Neat told us about how when his son's surfboard and wetsuit were stolen, he was able to use Facebook to apprehend the theif. Also, we finished the cardboard car Wednesday Challenge/contest, and then had a discussion about the big picture behind the entire thing.


Today we had a Wednesday Challenge where we tossed various tubes to one another in sync, and then caught them without leting any of them fall to the floor. Unfortunately, neither group was able to finish the challenge because the last stage was too hard, and it started to rain.

Tube Toss


Today we discussed the results of the cardboard car Wednesday Challenge. I got second place with an average of 166.667 inches, which was 1 inch less than the 1st place person >:O I made a sketchup of my cardboard car beforehand, so I was able to save time on recording everything that happened post-competition.


Today an alumnus from CV visited us and talked about real world applications for skills learned in Dr. Neat's classes.


Today we worked on the observation form for Friday, when the alumnus visited us and talked to us about the real world usaghe of skills learned in this class.

Real World Skill Usage (A Visit From the Future)


Today I ate a KitKat bar during lunch. It was tasty.


Today I started working on an excel file with Nilesh and Logan that would predict our scores if we did another cardboard car challenge. We entered in our factors, and decided on what changing the factors (yes or no, 1-10, etc.)


Today I worked more on the excel file for the cardboard car predictions. We added some more factors into the file so that we could be "more accurate," but since we didn't have enough data to make an accurate increase or decrease in predicted score, we jus guessed how much a factor might affect a person's score.


Today I worked more on the excel file that had the formulas to predict our next scores on the cardboard cars. While I was walking home, I talked to someone I knew from doing proofreading at, and learned how to properly use if then statements. I learned this giant piece of destructuion: =IF(X>=8,1.15,IF(AND(X<8,X>4),1,IF(X<=4,0.85,"INVALID"))).


Today we made a sketchup model of a cardboard wheel, then used the resize tool to change their sizes to match that of our cardboard cars.


Today we all worked on getting our websites up to date. Dr. Neat finally figured out what was going on with my website, and I got a new web address. I hope that my website doesn't self destruct on me any time in the near future.


Today we had a Wednesday Challenge that was similar to the one in the first semester where we had to design and fabricate a capital letter E out of cardboard. It was pretty simple, so I was one with time to spare, and just messed around for the rest of the period.

Cardboard E's


Today we had time to finish our cardboard E's, but since I finished that yesterday, I just worked on my website. Also, I ate the first cheeseburger that I have ever eaten in my life today during lunch, and I have to admit, I like burgers without cheese a lot better.


Today, some of were completely up to date and had nothing to do, so Dr. Neato took Nick, Keilah, and me to the shop to make the wooden reed/plug things for the Robotics handout whistles. We made a giant pile of sawdust, but had to blow it up a little bit at the end of the period to get rid of the evidence of our crimes against humanity. Also, I went into a little bit of a berserk mode and sanded my fingers a bit until they bled :( Otherwise, we kind of just screwed around in the sweatshop just like we had been screwing around before being taken away. Also, I pranked Keilah, Cole, Kevin, and Ian into thinking that I had shattered a window in the shop xD The end.


Today, my people needed me, so I PRed 60 pages of one of the Chinese novels at As a result, I got early access to 60 pages of beautiful, magestical Chinese badassery. In class today,


Today, we watched the Wintergatan Marble Machine music video that Kevin reccomended to Dr. Neato to show to us. It was realy cool. THe end xD


Today, we had a Wednesday Challenge where we would design and build a container that would protect a potato chip while it was shipped from La Canada to CV.

Potato Chip Ship

Today, I worked with my group in making a sketchup and talking about the price of materials. Our design was a minimally sized box that would have the potato chip surrounded with fiberfill (the stuff in most pillows) loosely stuffed into it. The fiberfill would hopefully act better than cotton balls or the like in absorbing outside impact forces.


Today we finished the sketchup and powerpoint for the box. We also found out the cheapest price of the fiberfill that we needed, which was a small bag from for about $5.50.


Today, we recieved our design from period 4 on how we would be building our box. Out of the gate, I am already beginning to seriously doubt the design. We are supposed to use paper towels to make the cushioning for our potato chip (a horrible Idea, I know) and a parachute that has the same surface area as the top of the box, which would do utterly nothing. The first thing that we did was to figure out how to (probably not) legally redesign the parachute and cushioning mechanisms. Then, I made the cardboard box that everything except for the parachute would be enclosed in.


Today, Our group began to work on the parachute and the cushioning system. For the cushioning system, we took about 20 feet of paper towels and shredded them into small pieces that would hopefully act like the springs in a matress. By the end of the preiod, I was able to compress roughly 30 cubic inches of shredded paper towels to about 1/4 of their priginal size, so I would say that it was a success for the most part. Furthermore, I worked on he parachute. Instead of the useless 3 inch by 5 inch rectangle, I made a slightly dished circle that was about 20 to 24 inches in diameter, glued and taped 2 inch sections of straws through the vertical edges of the cardboard box, ran string with washers tied onto one end through the straws, and taped the washers to the improved parachute to end up with a decent looking parachute with ballast on the edge on all 4 cardinal directions.


Today our group finished the enclosure for the potato chip. Although I improved the design of the parachute a lot, it seems that I didn't make it big enough to create a significant amount of drag. Also, half of the time, the box falls on top of the parachute and renders it as just extra weight onto the box. The boxes haven't even been shipped yet, but I am already beginning to have doubts about the potato chip remaining untouched while it is shipped.


Today, I worked on getting my website up to date. Also, I asked Dr. Neato if I could work on my skateboard outside.


Today was a minimum day. As a result, we didn't get much done. :p The end.


Today, we reviewed our third quarter grades, and the skateboard season finally started!!! Finally, I can finish my longboard, and hopefully make a Starcraft 2 themed skateboard as well.


Today, we had a Wednesday Challenge where we tried to fit as many skateboards on a 5' by 5' board of plywood parallel or perpendicular to the grain as possible. Since it was basically the same thing as last year, it was really easy, and I had time to mess around with my skateboard.

Skateboard Cutout


Today, we got the results for yesterday's Wednesday Challenge, and it turned out that we won. Also, I worked on the Sketchup model for my hopeful second longboard.


Today, we did something, but I don't remember what because I am writing from 18 days in the future.


Today, we did something, but I don't remember what because I am writing from 17 days in the future.


Today, we did something, but I don't remember what because I am writing from 16 days in the future.


Today, we we had a wednesday Chalenge where we designed mentor gifts for the Robotics mentors.

Mentor Gifts

Today, it was open house, but I didn't go. I don't really remember what I did, so here's a picture of a cat without ears :3


Today, it was a minimum day, so we didn't do very much. After school, I went to the JROTC Spring Picnic, but it rained so much that we were all soaked by the time that we got to CV Park, which was where the picnic was being held.


Today, I worked on my longboard. I printed out a template of my current version at home, and revised the sizing and a couple of the curves. Also, I worked on the cardboard model of my board from last year in preparation for decorating the real board.


Today, I made my cutouts on the thing for the things on my thing (aka i forgot :P)


Today, I worked on finishing my longboard from last year. After spray painting the board, I applied black griptape, and then I was basically done.


Today, my Math teacher Dr. Tanahan told me that I got a 100% on the math test that I thought that I had bombed. Also, I cut out a paper template of my new design for my longboard. I ordered some trucks off of amazon, but since the earliest day that they arrive is this friday, i kind of missed out on having Dr. Neato test the board over the weekend. I also spent 40 minutes getting back to speed on my website. I missed out on 3 weeks worth of entries, but I still somehow managed to maintain an A in the class!


Today, we had a Wednesday Challenge where we devised a message to electronically brodcast to extraterrestrial beings. Also, I transferred the sketchup design for my longboard from my laptop at home to the one at school, so I was abe to also upload some pictures of different views of the longboard.

Extraterrestrial Message

Ssssssssssssh pretend today didn't happen :P I forgot what happened.


Today, I went around the room helping people print out their board templated and glue together their cardboard blanks.


The longboard trucks that I had ordered on arrived 5 days early, so I was hyped. During snack, I put the trucks on my board, and practiced during lunch and most of 5th period. The board rides really smoothly. Also, out territory expanded from just the hallway to include the upper parking lot area where our spray paint box is.


Today, I spent the period practicing riding my longboard. I am now confident turning while going down the medium slope on the parking area.


Today we had a Wednesday Challenge where we were blindbolded, and a partner ggave us directions on how to assemble a pvc structure. It was, like last year, one of the most rage/styress induing Wednesday Challenges of the year. >:O

Blindfolded Tinker Toys

Today, I worked on making tighter turns on my longboard. Also, I helped Nilesh make the initial cuts for his cardboard longboard on the table saw.


Today, I spent the entire period working on on my longboard skills. I am slowly going higher up the steep hill to practice for when I go down one of the steep streets and turn. Also, we talked about the Wednesday Challenge results during the start of class. We didn't win. :( Furthermore, I finally finished the preliminary requirements for making this year's longboard. All I have to do now is to get better than Dr. Neato at riding my longboard.




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Notebook Semester 2

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