Video of Airbus A380 in flight

I managed to film the Airbus A380 which was at the Dubai Airshow going through its fly-by. The original video was filmed in HD (1080i), but to make it easier for me to post it online and for people to download, I have edited it and scaled it down to DVD quality.

UPDATE: Videos are no longer available for download as my host (Apple’s .Mac service) was unhappy with the large number of people downloading them. In April, more than 1.3 TB of videos was downloaded which is 5 times what Apple allows. I’ll update the links below when I find an alternate place to host these videos.

A380 – QuickTime 7 DVD Quality
A380 – Windows Media 9 DVD Quality
A380 – Windows Media 9 HDTV (1080p) Quality

This guy is out of control

Michael Jackson just seems to attract trouble these days, regardless of where he is:

Khaleej Times – November 13th, 2005

Michael Jackson’s toilet faux pas in Dubai
By Amira Agarib

13 November 2005

DUBAI — When she went to the ladies washroom in the Egyptian Court of Ibn Battuta Mall at 9.30 last night, 37-year old Latifa M. never imagined that she would come face to face with pop icon Michael Jackson, who walked in dressed in a T-shirt and trousers, with his head covered with the Emirati women’s traditional head scarf Sheila.

The Tunisian, who is a teacher in a private school in Dubai, screamed in shock and ran out of the ladies room when she realised that the woman-like person was a man. She went back in to photograph the pop singer with her mobile phone, while he was busy fixing his make up.

This time it was the turn of Michael Jackson who ran after the Ajman-based teacher, to retrieve the pictures. The scene attracted the security of the mall, who tried to take the phone from Latifa, but she refused and asked for compensation, while the two women accompanying Jackson tried to convince her to sit in private and settle the issue.

Wary of this suggestion, the teacher called the police. Colonel Abdul Jalil Al Mehdi, Deputy Director of the Preventive Security Department of Dubai Police, took the matter in his hands and tried to solve the issue, while Jackson left it to his companions to explain who he is and solve the matter.

While Latifa insisted on compensation, Jackson flatly refused to pay up. The police informed Latifa that the UAE laws do not entitle her to any financial gain from the situation and they convinced her to hand over the mobile, which she did after erasing the photos for the fear of being penalised.

The G-Wagen Lives!

From a DaimlerChrysler press release dated November 11th, 2005:


Mercedes-Benz G-Class: Legendary Off-Roader Will Remain Part Of The Mercedes Product Lineup

Stuttgart/Graz, Nov 11, 2005

DaimlerChrysler will continue to produce its “classic off-roader” in the coming years. On behalf of Mercedes-Benz, the company Magna Steyr has manufactured over 185,000 units of the legendary G-Class in Graz, Austria, since 1979. The car continues to be very popular among customers, and it has been part of the Mercedes product lineup for the past 26 years.

The Mercedes-Benz E-Class 4MATIC, which Magna Steyr in Graz has also been building since 1996, will be manufactured instead at the DaimlerChrysler plant in Sindelfingen from early 2007. “By continuing to produce the G-Class in Graz and manufacturing all E-Class variants at our main plant in Sindelfingen from 2007, we have found a viable solution for both partner,” explains Dr. Dieter Zetsche, DaimlerChrysler Board of Management member and head of the Mercedes Car Group. “We are delighted that we can continue our successful and long-standing cooperation with Magna Steyr.”

With its rugged technology and outstanding off-road capabilities, the G-Class has set standards from the very start. And it is equipped with the industry’s most effective drive and driving safety systems, combining permanent all-wheel drive with the 4ETS electronic traction system and three differential locks that are activated when needed.

The vehicle’s striking shape, which has remained nearly unchanged over a period of almost three decades, has made the “G” a design classic with cult status. Together with its legendary ruggedness, the off-roader’s design has contributed most to its popularity. “Mercedes-Benz wrote automotive history by always ensuring that the G-Class remained state of-the-art over the past 26 years, and it will continue to offer its customers the very latest technology in the future,” says Zetsche.

Copyright © 2005, DaimlerChrysler AG

Story originally via

Halo & Halo 2: Even better on Xbox 360

Dennis linked to this news item on about compatibility between Halo and Xbox 360 and I think it goes a long way to make buyers of the new game console really excited.

First things first: Thank you for supporting Bungie, Halo and Halo 2. You guys rock, and we love you. It’s the anniversary of Halo 2, the game that launched on November 9th, 2004 and forever changed the way we curse.

A year after Halo 2 arrived in stores, and almost four years since the original Halo, it seems only logical that we should make them prettier right? Although that prettiness has a relatively high entry point – the arrival of a new generation of hardware in the shape of the Xbox 360.

A while back, Microsoft announced that the 360 would have some level of backward compatibility. A handy feature for folks with big Xbox collections moving into the future. We worked closely with that team to ensure that Halo and Halo 2 both performed according to plan. That meant a lot of work for our test team.

To clarify, the “new” version of Halo or Halo 2 is simply the disk you have already. Pop it into your 360 and it’ll load up just like before. You will have to log into Xbox Live to enable Halo 2’s online functions, but both games will work immediately.

But here’s another bonus – the hardware in the 360 can do a lot of nifty stuff, and specifically in the cases of Halo and Halo 2, it can display the graphics in wide screen, at 720p, with full scene anti-aliasing. And it doesn’t look kludgy, artifacty or smeary like an upscanning DVD player. The best way to describe it is that both games look like they’re running on a PC at those resolutions.

Halo 2 on Xbox 360 screen shot

I can’t believe it’s real snow

I live in a crazy place. The sceptic in me just wasn’t sure they could pull it off, but they did. At this moment, and from now on, every day of the year, rain or shine, hot or cold, residents and visitors in Dubai will be able to go visit the desert in the morning, have a barbecue on the beach in the afternoon, and go skiing at night…all on the same day and in the same city.

The Snow Park at Ski Dubai is now open for business, with the ski & snowboard slopes themselves opening in three weeks on December 2nd. I went to the Mall of the Emirates on my way home from work this afternoon and got these pictures on my camera phone [click pictures to see larger version, and check out the video clip at the end of this post]:

Ski Dubai snow park picture from inside Mall

Ski Dubai snow park picture from inside Mall

Ski Dubai snow park picture from inside Mall

Ski Dubai snow park picture from inside Mall

Ski Dubai snow park picture from inside Mall

Ski Dubai snow park picture from inside Mall

Ski Dubai snow park picture from inside Mall