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Batman v Superman

Batman v Superman wasn’t terrible, but it’s such a shame that so many golden opportunies were missed. It was a splattering of scenes with half-baked explanations to connect the dots between the scenes. We need stronger reasons for our heroes to be fighting than them just not being willing to talk to each other. Here’s how BvS could have been better:

Bad: weak reasons for Superman v Batman fight, lack of internal conflict.

They built up the courtroom scene pretty well as a way to blame Superman, but then immediately threw it away as news crews reported it was a suicide bomb. How do the taunting notes to Bruce even make sense here? Superman so quickly falling into the “kill Batman” plan is not very Superman. He can do whatever he wants, what makes him interesting is that he constantly has to limit himself because he has a moral compass to keep him in check. Making him so easily decide to trade Batman for Martha betrays the strength of Superman’s character and him being more than just muscle.

Better: Lex should build up much more animosity towards Superman, Superman shouldn’t simply decide to fight Batman.

Lex frames Superman for multiple attrocities and does major character assassination. Everyone thinks Superman is out of control and they’re scared. Someone needs to stop him. This fuels Batman’s rage (no need for the silly taunting checks which don’t even really make sense) and he begins his kryptonite battle plan. Superman struggles with his inability to save those that Lex is killing, everyone hating him, whether or not it’s all worth it. Should he just leave the humans be?

The courtroom scene happens and everyone thinks Superman killed everyone. Batman engages Superman at this point. They fight with crowds watching, news crews circling them in helicopters. Batman furiously attacks, Superman defends, trying to convince Batman he’s innocent. The crowds cheer on Batman, they hate Superman. Batman triggers a trap and shoots some kryptonite towards Superman, but there’s some collateral damage. Superman doesn’t sidestep the incoming kryptonite and instead saves the people put in harm’s way by Batman. The kryptonite pierces Superman’s lower abdomen and he drops to his knees. We see angry humans all around and watching on TV - they chant for Superman’s death. Batman lifts Superman by his neck, ready to stab him with the kryptonite spear with rage in his eyes as his gaze pans to the group Superman just saved. This group looks on with sadness knowing they would be dead had it not been for Superman. Batman hesitates, his grip loosens and Superman quickly repels himself away and vanishes into the sky. Lex is furious Batman didn’t finish the job.

Superman goes into isolation as he heals and decides that maybe he should just leave the humans be. Lex works on Doomsday, knowing that Superman is still out there. Batman starts hacking into LexCorp as he starts to suspect Lex is not what he seems. Perhaps some opportunity for corporate Wayne Enterprises vs LexCorp stuff here. Maybe have WW partner with Bruce here for her own motives, but then they both discover each other’s secret identities. Bruce tries to convince WW to help him take down Lex, but she decides to go back in hiding. Batman breaks into LexCorp (this fight scene replaces the saving Martha one), but he’s ultimately too late. Doomsday wakes up, almost kills Batman but WW had a change of heart and hops in and saves him. Much destruction, yadda yadda, Superman sees/hears and decides he can’t not help and joins the fight…

Bad: Doomsday fight was an unintelligent slugfest.

Our heroes haven’t worked together before and aren’t used to teaming with others, but they’re smart and should quickly adapt, although perhaps not perfectly. In the movie, this fight was basically just Batman running away, and Superman getting thrown around. Wonder Woman was mostly awesome, but they didn’t work together all that well or fight very intelligently.

Better: a preview of Justice League teamwork during Doomsday fight.

Have all the heroes struggle against Doomsday. They can barely touch him and he’s causing lots of death all around him. The heroes go into death prevention mode and try to save as many people as possible. Batman is using all his toys to try to distract Doomsday, WW and Superman are trying to slow him down as much as possible while also swooping up people and sending them to safety. They land some blows, but Doomsday doesn’t seem to be slowing down while they are gradually being beaten to death. Doomsday eye beams at a family running to safety but WW throws her shield to intercept it, leaving her vulnerable. Superman flies under a collapsing building and holds it up as Doomsday rushes towards him. Wonder Woman lassos one fist preventing a blow, but Doomsday pummels Superman with other as Batman is trying to evacuate the building. Superman holds but coughs up blood.

Batman yells out that the kryptonite spear is the only way to stop him. Superman and WW are barely holding their own together against Doomsday, but Batman can’t get to the spear quick enough. Superman tells WW to get the spear since he can’t for obvious reasons. There’s a brief hesitation from WW since she knows Superman is outmatched alone, but then a silent acknowledgement that this is their best shot. She flies off as Superman engages Doomsday one on one. He fights valiantly but is obviously losing. Doomsday smashes Superman into the ground, and turns to Batman who’s been rescuing other humans. With his full attention, Batman is eventually pinned and about to be killed when Superman rushes back into the fight and absorbs the killing blow. He latches onto Doomsday’s back trying to restrain him as WW returns with the spear. Doomsday starts to eye beam and it’s the end of MoS over again, but this time a disabled Batman is about to be in the beam’s path. WW has no clean shot, but Superman commands her to attack. She throws the spear and Superman twists, positioning Doomsday in the spear’s path. It pierces both of them, and Doomsday and Superman collapse…

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Awkward Turtle 1

I’ve decided to start a series of “Awkward Turtle” posts where I discuss moments in time where young Oliver was perhaps not the really cool dude you all know today.

I recalled this particular memory in the shower this morning, somewhat randomly. When I was in middle school, I was fairly snappy in math class and would generally be the first to finish any assignments in class. Middle schoolers are the meanest, and like many others, I was looking for a way to fit in. I accepted the role of “nerdy little asian kid” and went with it. I was a decent school boy, so fitting this profile was something I could succeed at.

One day, a girl in class finished her assignment first and turned it in. Acting on impulse, perhaps worried of losing my adolescent identity, I blurted out “wow, you finished before me?!” I was immediately met with silence from the class and realized I had made an ass of myself. This is when I was given a lesson in smart not equating to likable.

Now, I chuckle at young Oliver since he deserved it and you get this first awkward turtle story.

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On Presidents and Net Neutrality

I wouldn’t say I’m strongly affiliated with either political party, but I believe each party/candidate’s view on net neutrality (NN) can be a proxy as to what kind of leader they’d be.

While legit reasons exist, none of the top Republican candidates oppose NN for those reasons. They all give arguments that are either incredibly disingenuous or show a huge lack of understanding.

  • Trump: “Obama’s attack on the internet is another top down power grab. Net neutrality is the Fairness Doctrine. Will target the conservative media.”
  • Cruz: “In short, net neutrality is Obamacare for the Internet. It would put the government in charge of determining Internet pricing, terms of service and what types of products and services can be delivered, leading to fewer choices, fewer opportunities and higher prices.”
  • Carson: “We need to be exploring ways to allow people to do what they want to do. They’ve been doing it for years, so why should we now impose a layer of government control.”
  • Rubio: “It is one of our people’s greatest treasures, which is why it belongs in the hands of our people, not our government.”
  • Bush: “The idea of regulating access to the Internet with a 1934 law is one of the craziest ideas I’ve ever heard. … It’s not going to be good for consumers. It’s certainly not going to be good for innovation.”

Rubio is maybe close to a legit reason (or at least it’s pleasant rhetoric), but consumers have little power in markets with little choice and NN is meant to limit the abuse monopolistic ISPs may inflict.

Lying to push an agenda is terrible, but coming out in opposition of something without even understanding it is not an attribute I look for in my next president either. Most of the leading GOP candidates tout NN as anti-consumer and as some form of “big government trying to control the internet.” Since it’s actually pretty pro-consumer in that it prevents large ISPs from holding the internet hostage, I find the GOP spin incredibly deceitful. It’s even more depressingly ironic that many of these same candidates are pressing tech companies to provide backdoors into their encryption, which is far more “controlling of the internet.”

So, that makes the upcoming election relatively easy for me. I don’t want a president that has so apparently sold themselves out to Comcast or are foolish enough to believe their lies for free. That strikes out every Republican hopeful (though honestly reasons to do so are not otherwise lacking).

All that said, while I’m skeptical he’d be able to accomplish everything he’s pushing and I don’t know if I’m completely bought into all his ideas, I’d love to see what a Bernie Sanders could do in office.

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Holidays

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

This year, everyone corralled in Austin and we gave each other terrible (awesome) gifts and played lots of Magic.

Magic:

Christmas 2015 - 005

Franklin’s brisket on the deck:

Christmas 2015 - 006

Hats:

Christmas 2015 - 034

Crazy onesies:

Christmas 2015 - 042

Trailer:

Some other notables:

  • Oriana loves Wonderful Christmastime and begged me to play nearly a dozen different covers of it in a row
  • To satisfy Oriana's love of Taytay, I gave her a Saint Taylor Swift candle, a Taylor Swift blanket, and a Taylor Swift "haters gonna hate" mug. She loved them.
  • Mozilla thought the world was ending last night (NYE)
  • I'm quite fond of the new Star Wars. It has its flaws, but I just had a blast the entire time watching it.

Doing my big brother duties

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Trollsy Brother/Son

In true trollsy fashion, I have finally associated photos with my family member contacts in my phone:

I finally got around to associating pics to my family members...

For completeness, here are the large versions:

Uggers 001

Oriana's Graduation 106

Uggers 004

TROLL, OUT.

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State Fair 2015

We had our traditional annual Dallas trip this past weekend. Usually we go OU weekend, but there were too many conflicts this year, so we ended up doing it a week earlier. I flew into Dallas directly from SF to join up with the gang, made Oriana pick me up, then we watched UT get slaughtered and hung out at the State Fair.

State Fair 2015 - 002

State Fair 2015 - 009

State Fair 2015 - 017

More photos on the flickr. Here’s also a video of Sam:

And… I’ve started to populate viraj.fail!

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More Magic!

A whiles back when Jonney, Mark and I competed in a team Magic tournament in Portland, some of the bounty we got was a bunch of planeswalkers toys. We’ve now got them stationed above their appropriate poster!

omg such nerd

A photo posted by Oliver Wong (@owiber) on

NERD OUT.

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Magic Posters!

We finally hung the Magic posters I framed at the old house but never hung up completely. Wallah!

It's like a bunch of nerds live here or something.

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New Blog!

Well, now that I’ve been a front-end developer for the brunt of my career, I’ve finally shamed myself into replacing/updating my blog which had some embarassing code to say the least. Naturally, this new incarnation has almost no JavaScript (for now). :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

Anyways, I’ve made the whole blog much more simple and switched from WordPress to just using GitHub Pages.

Maybe this means I’ll blog more again, but don’t count on it. :wink:

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NEW JOB

This month, I started at Stripe! I’m currently in the middle of a three week stint in San Francisco. The scent of piss is not uncommon here, but the city is very nostalgic for me, so I guess that at least evens things out, haha. I’m enjoying my time here, but I miss my Mozilla. On the plus side, I’m really excited to work with my new teammates and Stripe has great food (breakfast, lunch, and dinner!).

Last weekend, I strolled on over to Chinatown and found that unsurprisingly Golden Gate Bakery was on vacation. My hit rate is probably around 50/50 now, or perhaps a little worse. I debated bringing my camera on this trip, and ended up doing so, but I have yet to take it out of my bag. I’m going to San Diego at the end of the month with my new Stripe team, so perhaps I’ll put it to some use there.

Before starting at Stripe, I had roughly a month off. I did a lot of bumming around, playing some Minecraft, and went to Los Angeles and New Orleans. LA featured the debut of this video:

and resulted in this one:

I’ve got a bunch of random clips of Sam from NOLA where we tried really hard to make him out to be a racist, but I’m not sure what I have gels well, so it may not end up anywhere. I did, however, rummage through a lot of old media and came out with this:

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