31 March 2008

My First RPP Experience

So this afternoon, I went to my first RPP appointment. For those of you who do not know this, RPP is the Research Participation Program that gives undergraduate students a chance to participate in some of the research being conducted by graduate students and faculty researchers in the Department of Psychology. Since I am taking Psychology 2 this semester, I am required to participate in research experiments for a total of 5 hours. I didn’t want to sign up for those experiments that would require putting wires around my head to measure some kind of brain activity, because what can I do if something goes wrong?! So I was trying to find survey-based experiment from the list of available studies online. Finally I decided to give a try on Experiment 73. The experiment was scheduled in Tolman, and it was specified that the experiment would start right at the hour, not 10 minutes after. Tolman is that strange building that you can never figure out where you are. As I wandered around on the fourth floor, I thought that it would be such a good idea to just let us search for a room that does not even exist and record how long it takes us to figure that out! Anyway, after spending five minutes wandering around on the fourth floor, and I finally found room 4105.

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Posted by Yang Cao at 9:42 | Permalink

29 March 2008

Ambulatory Adventures!

No, this entry isn't about paramedics or anything remotely as exciting. Just noting that, since I got into Berkeley, I've walked around a lot more than I ever did in LA. The very nature of the city lends itself to bipedal transport, I suppose. Everything is in convenient walking distance away (or at least is reachable by bus), so there is no immediate necessity for a car. Indeed, sometimes owning a motor vehicle in Berkeley is supremely trying, since there are the draconian parking laws and unintuitive road structures to manage. It seems that the city of Berkeley actually intentionally discourages driving; how else can you justify those large barricades in the middle of the road that divert traffic in only one direction?

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Posted by Joel Kim at 3:58 | Permalink

28 March 2008

Power in Numbers

If you're interested in making a difference you can see...

On March 29 at 8 p.m., switch off your lights for Earth Hour. Millions around the world will be doing the same in a global effort to demonstrate how a simple gesture can have far-reaching benefits for our environment. Join the Earth Hour movement and see the difference 60 minutes can make. Earth Hour is a global event created to symbolize that each one of us, working together, can make a positive impact on climate change - no matter who we are or where we live. From Sydney to San Francisco, the World Wildlife Fund is spearheading this initiative in 25 cities across 6 continents.

Hope you're able to participate!

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Posted by Juan at 0:30 | Permalink

24 March 2008

Spring Break

YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!! Wait....except I have a paper due on Monday and two presentations due on Tuesday. That basically sums up what I'll be spending this week on. Well that's not too bad because I've decided to go visit family in Palm Springs because I need a break. Even if I'm doing homework at least I'll be by the pool! This semester has kept me extra busy, I don't recommend 17.5 units and 15-20 hours of work. Yes it's possible to do it, but it's really not that much fun. On a side note...I got my first C+ on something in college. I'm really annoyed because 1/3 of the class got D's and they get to re-write their papers but I don't and my grade is close to being just as bad. I plan on spending every waking hour of break working on my second paper...okay so maybe I'll spend some time in the pool, but I am determined to get an A on my next paper now.

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Posted by Marissa Ponder at 8:53 | Permalink

23 March 2008

Home Sweet Home

Isn't home the best? Even though some people tell me that I'm going to start loving Berkeley more than SoCal because I'm going to Cal, I find that highly unlikely. Right now, the sun's streaming in through the windows and it just makes you want to jump right out of bed at sunrise, or a bit after. Back in Berkeley, my alarm rings, and I hit the Snooze button...three times...it's just so grey outside that I want to stay under the covers for as long as possible. Besides the weather, Socal is just home. I love being with my family and some of my friends from high school. Even though people at Berkeley are awesome,

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Posted by Victoria Eng at 9:00 | Permalink

21 March 2008

BBC News Rewriting History

I don't mean that BBC News is rewriting history in a good way. As some may or may not know, Taiwan is holding their presidential elections tomorrow, March 22. This, along with the coming Beijing Olympics, has caused more news to be written about Taiwan than normal. Thus, the proliferation of incorrect and suggestive sentences, strongly biased towards the People's Republic of China, has increased. Sentences and Formatting that Greatly Irritate Me: (1) "China says that Taiwan is part of its territory, although the two have been separately governed since 1949." Tibet focus for Taiwan election (2) "Taiwan broke away from the mainland in 1949, when the Communists took over." China trade links are key in Taiwan poll (3) Interactive History BBC News Interactive History Rebuttals: (1) This sentence completely ignores the fact that beginning in 1895, Japan had formal control of Taiwan with the Treaty of Shimonoseki. And it was only in 1887 did the Manchu Empire (the Qing Dynasty who ruled China) declare Taiwan part of China. Actually, when the Taiwanese heard that they were to be part of Japan, they declared a Taiwan Republic. A couple days later, when Japan came in, the republic was taken over. Check out these maps: Taiwan is not part of the map here in the Qing Dynasty, nor on this Ming Dynasty map (the dynasty right before Qing). Taking into consideration history, one must remember that possession is eleven points of the law. Immigration between the mainland and Taiwan was also quite fluid as they are located close to each other. (Currently the closest territory of Taiwan is less then a mile away from China, but the main island is at least 80 miles away.) Control of Taiwan varied throughout history with different empires ruling over portions of it at different times.

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Posted by K. Lee at 7:10 | Permalink

20 March 2008

My day, every day, as an average UC Berkeley student

Fret fret freezing cold, fret fret freakout, fret fret fret fret. Wake up late? Rush, run faster, catch a random bus, and make it to class earlier than you usually do. Get an exam back? Hit the books again and maybe worry some more until you improve your grade, or, alternatively cheer! Today was one of those fret fret freeze fret fret CHEER!!!! days, which makes it significantly better than average.

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Posted by Christina at 4:48 | Permalink

18 March 2008

Fall 08 Semester Planning!!!

Telebears Phase I begins in mid-April!!! The online schedule of classes for the fall semester is already up, so start planning your schedule! Remember, during Phase I, sign up for classes that fill up quickly, like organic chemistry and the other general science classes. The labs for these classes fill up really fast. You should schedule your other classes to fit around these lower division science requirements since their labs take up so much time. I've already started planning my schedule and so far, I know I'm definitely going to Chemistry 3B/3BL (this is the second part of organic chemistry) and Biology 1B. Most students take Biology 1B before they take Biology 1A

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Posted by Victoria Eng at 3:44 | Permalink

17 March 2008

Happy St. Patty's Day - Just don't Wear Orange!

It's St. Patty's Day! You know what that means - a massive celebration of Irish heritage! Green, green, everywhere. Most everyone wears green. In elementary school, you'll pinch your classmates if they're not wearing green. Usually the university crowd isn't going to pinch you if you forget to sport a clover. So, yeah, you can wear just about any color you want on St. Patrick's Day - just don't wear orange! Why not? Protestants (represented by the color orange) have been oppressing Catholic Northern Ireland (represented by the color green) since 1509, when Henry the 8th was King of England, but especially since 1690's Battle of the Boyne when Protestant William of Orange defeated James the Second. source According to my friend of Irish Catholic heritage, wearing orange is"...like wearing a KKK hood on MLK day." He cringes whenever he sees someone sporting orange on his happy holiday. So, as we in Berkeleyans strive to be sympathetic of all cultures, let's remember to wear something other than orange as we celebrate this snake-chasing, green-wearing Saint. Happy Saint Patrick's Day, Everyone! Clover image from: http://www.co.bay.mi.us/bay/home.nsf/public/BE2FEDCC7EDDC47885257346006800F6/$file/four-leaf_clover2.jpg

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Posted by Christina at 6:45 | Permalink

17 March 2008

Trying something new

So this semester, I've decided to get more involved on Cal campus and spend less time studying! It's been a great goal. What have I done differently? Well, I've been swimming at least 2 days a week now(yay me, even though it seems pathetic!), joining more clubs, and signed up for a DeCal. This one decal is amazing- Relay for Life Decal! In the two hours on thursdays that I spend time there, we get to listen to a different speaker each time speaking about cancer, typical job professions in the health field. Then, we split up into our committees and plan for the much anticipated upcoming event: Relay for Life. For those of you who don't know what relay for life is about- it's a 24 hour event held( for cal, behind the RSF on May 3rd) where participants, people, volunteers spend one day to fight back cancer- hosting games, teams( where we walk for 24 hours straight), entertainer- make aware of cancer. Not only have I learned much more about different types of cancer, I've taken an active role in preparing for this event and I know it's going to be lots of fun!!! So, all you reading this, come!! So, after I joined this, I became involved in CAC(colleges against cancer) club and we've been doing many fund raising activities to bring awareness about various cancers and going to volunteer events. The other club I joined was PILLS- it's a club for interested pre-pharmacy students. It's a great club in that it advises you on the classes you should take to get into pre-pharm grad school, the various opportunities that you can get involved in right now that involve this field, and just networking with other like-minded people. I find that making the choice to get more involved has created a great balance so far- academically and socially. Anyway, my next goal is to find an apartment for next semester, although I'm quite reluctant to search for one since I've heard that it's quite difficult?

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Posted by Casey Wang at 6:34 | Permalink

16 March 2008

Pizza, Ping Pong, and Air Hockey

Have you ever heard of BERC? It stands for the Berkeley Energy and Resources Collaborative, a 2-year old graduate student club that brings together people interested in energy, climate change, and sustainability. With over 400 graduate student members, the most active mailserv I've ever seen, and creator of the huge UC Energy Symposium that just went down on March 7th, I always thought it was a shame they didn't have a place for undergraduates. It's going to change this week: **Cheese Board** Pizza, Ping Pong, and Air Hockey Wednesday March 19th, 5pm-6:30 pm Mulford, Room 260, CNR Student Resource Center As a loyal reader of Fresh Faces, you're invited to the BERC Undergrad Kickoff Night! We want to have a fun, relaxing, time while introducing undergrads to the incredible opportunities and especially the community that is BERC. This event is for EVERYONE, grad students, undergrads, faculty and staff. There is no agenda, come eat, drink, be merry, and practice your leisure sports because the competition will be fierce. The event will be organized by Harris Cohn (CRS) and I (EEP) who were appointed VPs of BERC Undergrad earlier this year. The title is still fuzzy, but our role isn't. Our plan is to first create a mentoring program where undergraduates interested in energy, climate change, and sustainability, can pair up with graduates students in business, law, engineering, public policy, and the many sciences: social, physical, biological, & environmental. Second, we're looking for sophomores or juniors who might be interested in taking over our role and developing something larger for future years -- like a BERC study abroad program, or renewable energy projects in developing countries. Feel free to forward this announcement to your friends. Drop us a line if you have any questions. We're looking forward to it, hope to see you there! Harris Cohn (harriscohn@gmail.com) and Tay Feder (tfeder@gmail.com)

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Posted by Tay Feder at 1:15 | Permalink

16 March 2008

TV, online & legal

About five years ago, I thought to myself: why don't networks stream their shows online? Don't they want more viewers? It took them a while, but they're doing it now. Most stations, FOX, NBC, ABC, CBS, have started to offer their content online with ads. One site that has episodes and movies from multiple studios is Hulu.com, which just recently finished its beta testing and is open to the public. Netflix.com, also offers online viewing. If you or your parents use Netflix, you can log-on and watch some TV and movies online ad-free. Their content isn't as great as Hulu or content providers' sites, but the video quality is top-notch. In my mind there's no need to download illegal torrents / files from p2p apps and risk getting 'the letter' when there's a free and legal alternative... --

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Posted by Tay Feder at 0:23 | Permalink

16 March 2008

Friday Morning Practice

So as some of you may know, I work as a Hydration Technician at the stadium. Basically, I give football players water, which also involves setting up the water coolers on the field before practice, then taking them out and cleaning them after practice. This last Friday we had one of our 4 morning practices at 6:30 AM. I woke up at 4:45, washed up, and had some cereal before heading to the stadium. By the time I got there, it was already 5:45, and one of my coworkers was already setting things up. That morning, all 4 HydroTechs (myself included) showed up, as well as the 7 Sports Medicine Interns (SMIs). Just as practice got underway, it started to drizzle. Pretty soon, it was pouring rain, just pouring! Standing around on the football field at 6:30 in the morning holding racks of water bottles in the pouring rain was not fun. I was lucky to have a waterproof jacket on, but everything still got soaked. I was impressed by the football players, though. Despite the fact that they were out practicing in the early morning rain, they didn't complain or make a big fit. They just practiced through, and almost seemed to enjoy it. They had a very practical attitude about it; they had to practice, and so that's what they did, in spite of the rain. After practice was over and everything cleaned up by 8:30, I went home, washed up, and got ready for the day.

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Posted by Joel Kim at 5:12 | Permalink

16 March 2008

Microwave Sugar Cookies

I used to hate the thought of using the microwave, everything always turns out rubbery or just odd. But last night changed my mind... I didn't want to wait to heat up the oven, but I really wanted sugar cookies. Found this recipe at www.cooks.com decided to try. It turned out delicious! Cakey, fluffy not-too-sugary cookies.
MICROWAVE SUGAR COOKIES 3/4 c. butter 1 c. sugar 2 eggs, beaten 1 tsp. vanilla 2 2/3 c. flour 2 tsp. baking powder 1/2 tsp. salt Soften butter (15 seconds in microwave). Cream butter; gradually add sugar. Cream until fluffy; beat in eggs and vanilla. Toss flour, baking powder, and salt to mix; add to creamed mixture and combine well. Chill dough 1 hour until firm. Roll out to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut in shapes. Arrange 8 cookies in a ring on waxed paper. Cook 2 minutes on HIGH. Yield 3-4 dozen.
This experience has opened my mind to the fact that yes, sometimes microwaves can help you make things that taste good.

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Posted by Christina at 9:51 | Permalink

14 March 2008

Introduction

HI EVERYONE! So this is my first blog and before I can start providing advices I will introduce myself first. My name is John Cortez and I'm a freshie studying Environmental Economics and Policy (geez such a long name). I am also planning to double major in Political Science because I am mainly interested in policy making and solving public issues. Actually, I thought I was going to become an engineer, but...

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Posted by John Cortez at 8:46 | Permalink

12 March 2008

Spring Break...

For Berkeley students, Spring Break isn't much of a break. While the other UCs have their spring breaks right after 3rd quarter, Berkeley's spring break is smack in the middle of semester, right before round two of midterms. I can just imagine my spring break...studying for organic chemistry and toxicology. However, even with all the studying I have to do, I'm still going to spend some quality time at home in SoCal. Hopefully it's sunny there over spring break. By the way, it's going to start raining in Berkeley sometime soon and rain for the whole of next week. Just perfect. Berkeley has such odd weather.

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Posted by Victoria Eng at 7:12 | Permalink

12 March 2008

Whole Foods Market

Interested in all organic? Organic foods have limited amounts and types of pesticide residues. Although they're priced higher than non-organic foods, organic foods can be quite appealing to some people. Whole Foods Market sells mostly organic foods and it's only a short bus ride away. Simply take the 1R that goes along Telegraph and you'll go straight to Whole Foods Market. Another appealing aspect of Whole Foods Market is that they always have plenty of samples. They also have a large selection of granola, cheese, and breads. So, if you're interested in organic foods or if you're hungry, you should go visit Whole Foods sometime! :)

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Posted by Victoria Eng at 7:01 | Permalink

12 March 2008

Mini Laptops

Have you guys noticed that mini laptops are becoming quite popular? Just the other day, I saw this woman with this adorable white mini laptop and I really wanted to ask her for the model number, but she went inside the library and I didn't want to seem like a stalker. Later, I found out that the mini laptop was none other than the Asus Eee PC. Ranging from about $300-$500, the Asus Eee PCs weigh around 2 pounds with a 7" display screen. These mini laptops run on Linux operating systems but are Windows XP compatible. I read in some articles that they're used in some schools since the small keyboards are a perfect fit for little hands. To learn more about the Asus Eee PCs: http://eeepc.asus.com/global/

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Posted by Victoria Eng at 6:42 | Permalink

11 March 2008

Finally, some quality research!

I am extremely excited because I am going to be starting medical research at Kaiser Hospital! I will be assigned a few patients in a Crohn's Disease Study to which I have to perform various tasks including: calling patients during the study and making sure they are maintaining their medications and not taking new forms that may affect the study, sending their blood for lab work and then analyzing the data, preparing patients for surgery and observing the procedure, maintaining patient medical records and study questionnaire, working with the GI surgeon to investigate trends in the medications/study with the patients, and last but certainly not least writing a final report about the study for a possibility for publication to the study sponsor aka the pharmaceutical company. I am really thrilled about this position because this will be lab work in my area of interest instead of doing lab work in which I am preparing mice or running DNA strips. In addition, this research will help me determine whether I want to go into medical school to become a doctor or to become part of the growing medical research field. (And of course I am really excited because this is going to look fantastic on my resume!) If you have any questions about the work I'll be doing (i have to read a ton of material about Crohn's Disease, study procedure, etc) feel free to ask!

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Posted by Rola Abduljabar Rabah at 0:59 | Permalink

10 March 2008

Daylight Savings

Daylight savings came up on me unexpected this year. Isn't it supposed to be the first weekend of April? Sunday morning, I looked at my watch, looked at the clock on my computer, and realized one of them was probably wrong. Then I looked it up - starting March 2007, the United States changed Daylight Savings permanently, extending it one month. What's the point? I mean, people tell you that it's saving money, and that it's worthwhile - but has anyone actually done studies to prove it? Today I found this article by National Geographic, addressing these questions. Figured you folks might enjoy it, too. Extended Daylight Saving Time Not an Energy Saver? Brian Handwerk for National Geographic News March 7, 2008 On Sunday people in the United States will roll their clocks forward an hour at 2 a.m. and begin the country's second consecutive year of extended daylight saving time. The change, adopted into law last year, was touted as a way to save energy. But some studies suggest the move actually has consumers using more power—and paying bigger energy bills. Hendrik Wolff, an environmental economist at the University of Washington in Seattle, is skeptical of the purported savings. Wolff and colleague Ryan Kellogg studied Australian power-use data surrounding the 2000 Sydney Olympics, when parts of the country extended daylight saving time to accommodate the games. The pair compared energy use in the state of Victoria, which adopted daylight saving time earlier than normal, to South Australia, which did not. "Basically if people wake up early in the morning and go to bed earlier, they do save artificial illumination at night and reduce electricity consumption in the evening," Wolff said. "Our study confirmed that effect. But we also found that more electricity is consumed in the morning. In the end, these two effects wash each other out."

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Posted by Christina at 6:08 | Permalink

10 March 2008

sick.

So this past week marks the second time in a month that I've been pretty sick with a cold. Do you remember reading that book "Alexander and the terrible, horrible, No Good Very Bad Day" ? I read it back in elementary school and it was one of my favorites. Anyway, my point was that I felt like I was having one of those the day I got sick. See, on thursday morning at 8:00AM, I had a lab report for Chem 1a to turn in (a FORMAL lab report, might I add). So, I set my alarm for 7:10 because, well, 50 minutes is PLENTY of time to get ready for class right? Yes. But no, not if as soon as your alarm rings, your subconscious decides to pull a sneaky "lets turn off that darn noisy wake up call and go back to sleep" http://www.kennedy-center.org/programs/family/alexander/

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Posted by Angela Hsu at 9:18 | Permalink

08 March 2008

A Park and a Kid

After church at Berkland Baptist Church, Tokyo, I went to the park behind Korakuen with some people. For only a 300 yen ($3) entrance fee, we got to tour the entire park. It's plum blossom season and it was beautiful. After, we left and went towards the Korakuen Department store. Parked outside was a bike with a kid in the backseat. No parent to be seen. We stood there for 25 min before we decided to get help. Two people went in to ask the station master what to do. He said it wasn't his jurisdiction and to get the police to handle it. (Closest police station is a 7 min walk down the street). Meanwhile, the kid's dad finally came back. He unlocked his bike, patted his kid's head, and rode off. It was like.. hum... Tokyo's safe, but not that safe. There are often kidnapping reports (according to the Japanese people-church-friends).

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Posted by K. Lee at 3:59 | Permalink

07 March 2008

A month of Vacation

It's been one and a half weeks into my lovely vacation. Japanese universities have March off....and some even have February off too. I only have March off [International Christian University]. During this month, I've moved in with my cousin who is located in central Tokyo. The apartment is near Tokyo University [a.k.a. Todai]. Yesterday was quite productive. I finished my HTML final project for the UC Berkeley Extension class Creating Websites with HTML. http://www.unex.berkeley.edu/ Since I could do everything online, I had started in October. One has 6 months to finish an online class. Haha.

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Posted by K. Lee at 7:39 | Permalink