Come here often and see all the crazy things that I have been upto!

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Lighting Up The Rink

Part #1: Development & Design

During the summer, Monk Park on Versailles Avenue is a quiet, uneventful field located in residential Pierrefonds, QC. This quiet is interspersed by the occasional game of Ultimate Frisbee or the roar of commercial lawn mowers, and one would be forgiven for not noticing the handful of landscaping companies based in some of the homeowners’ parking lots. In winter; however, the excess manpower and vast expanse of snowy field is far from going to waste. In fact, even the garden hoses, gas generators and work floodlights are put to good use, since every year the Leger family (located on the field’s perimeter) is hard at work preparing an impressive and religiously maintained ice hockey rink on the first day of subzero temps.

monk map

Monk Park, where frisbee, hockey and innovation takes place!

Being a good friend of this family myself, I have been invited to numerous hockey games and have seen the preparation strategies employed by the younger members of the family evolve over the years. Since the older members of the family are busy running their own landscaping companies (mentioned above), they have become “coaches” of sorts for the younger members, who have themselves taken ownership of the rink (with occasional help from loving parents). Initial setup involves installing 2×8’s around the rink as “boards”, mounting overhead lighting circuitry, and around a dozen rounds of watering.

Timmy Leger in his precarious but brilliant zipline-hammock.

Timmy Leger in his precarious but brilliant zipline-hammock.

The youngest family member, Timmy Leger, is a big dreamer and a passionate of many hobbies – longboarding, snowboarding, biking, hockey, Polaroid photography, Jacuzzis, travel and sports in general. He has big shoes to fill with the reputation of his 3 older brothers (he knows), and sometimes his aspirations are just so far-fetched (ex. copper-coil and wood-fire heated hot tub, LED-underlit longboard, Hydro-Quebec-pole hammock zipline, 900km New Jersey to Montreal bike trip etc.) that they never quite come to fruition. But to give credit where it’s due, the last 2 did see completion, and testify to great potential.

One of my latest projects, converting an old laptop to a digital picture frame, and building a wooden frame from scratch.

One of my latest projects, converting an old laptop to a digital picture frame, and building a wooden frame from scratch.

I myself also have dreamt of ideas and undertaken projects, mostly in the realm of electronics and computers (ex. C++ and visual C# Windows programming, converting a laptop to a wooden digital picture frame, outlining my 3 basement windows with synchronized multicolor LED strip lights, circuit board soldering etc.). Self analysis: I become totally engrossed in projects that interest me, and often spend many morning hours obsessing over perfection of minor details. This often comes at the expense of personal relations; I can be very cold towards family when I’m laser focused. I’m also very frugal, but money is not an issue when it comes to needs for a project. I can’t begin to describe the satisfaction I get from the “WOW” factor, I’m a showoff and the cooler, the better.

Homemade longboard that was supposed to be the home of some battery-powered LED lights.

Homemade longboard that was supposed to be the home of some battery-powered LED lights.

What’s the connection with all these character traits and projects, you ask? Combine a spontaneous and creative idea-machine with a geeky, laser-focused jack-of-all-trades like me, and throw in LED lights into the mix… Having been impressed by my basement décor and knowing that I have experience myself with LED lights, controllers, and Chinese eBay suppliers, Timmy asked me if I could order him a waterproof kit so he could battery-power a few strips and light his longboard from underneath, making for a sweet night-ride. I gave plenty of advice on mounting and powering, but this project fell through the cracks, and Timmy started looking for other creative ideas when winter dawned.

The strip of LED lights in question. At first devoted to the longboard, then repurposed for the rink.

The strip of LED lights in question. At first devoted to the longboard, then repurposed for the rink.

Our million-dollar idea: why not use this 5m long waterproof LED light strip to make a Montreal Canadiens Habs logo with a red “C” and blue “H”, seal it up in clear, flexible PVC tubing, hook it up to a long wire and color controller, and freeze the whole thing right under center ice? The idea proved ingenious, but the technical challenges were daunting. Could one build this to withstand water submersion, winter chills, and weight pressure?

canadians

The Habs logo, the proud emblem we wish to replicate under the ice, in light and color.

Independent Assignment on Fractals!

Here it is, 33 slides of awesome PowerPoint goodness! A good few dozen hours went into this, just saying… Enjoy! 🙂

Does that mean I won’t ever get Sec. V math homework again!?!?!? lol

Final IA Presentation — Patrick Robichuad

Another Cmap, this time as an official assignment memory aid. So much detail, but not as much spit and polish as my other ones…

Trigonometric Identities Cmap!

These things had better count for marks… they take forever to perfect! Mind you, I’m getting pretty good at Cmaptools, but it still takes long to find all that information, organize it, color it, proofread it, submit it to Mrs. McG, correct it, and finally this!

Random Geogebra “Art”

Just me fooling around in Geogebra for the fun of it! Tell me that would make a nice geek t-shirt! 😉

Pretty much every type of function is included in here: Linear, sine, cosine, tangent, cosecant, secant, cotangent, quadratic, square root, rational, circle (I know, not a function!), you name it!