Tech. Travel. Nerd Culture.

The Multiverses I Live In…

I noticed, in the past few posts, I had the word “Another” in my blog titles. I mean, I noticed it now, at the moment I started writing this post… *shrug* I have lost track of time, and, welp, it’s ANOTHER (way longer than) 6 months+ since I last wrote. Been playin’ a bunch with AI stuff, so I’m slow-burn becoming part robot.

Anyways, I should do an update for the few that still come here (how many times have I said that? And how many times do I believe it?). Okay, done with the self-deprecating passive-aggressive rambling intro. You may noticed some small updates, esp., at the top of the homepage, you’ll see links to my Letterboxd and Good Reads. I still love movies and love reading books. Connect with me on there, if you are the same.

Since I last left off, I was at Monsterpalooza 2023… although, I’m slowing down on the Cons, I did attend SDCC2023 and Son of Monsterpalooza – in which I had done other things during that Halloween holiday month, including running through the mazes of Halloween Horror Nights, Knott’s Scary Farm, Nightmare Toys and Nightmare Cafe, and picked up a mummified fairy at the Oddities & Curiosities Expo – another Halloween Horror filled time, which you can recap here: Happy Halloween 2023! on my YouTube (please like & subscribe, if you still haven’t).

But, wait, that wasn’t all the horror that happened, the guys (Kareem, Pat, and Ken) at Tangential Giants podcast brought me back for the year to talk about the best, worst, and scariest horror flicks, in two parts: Part One can be found here, and part two is here. (Please like & subscribe to those guys. They’re cool.) And, then Eric Ignacio sealed my flawed reputation as an obsessed horror fanatic by creating this profile video of me explaining my horror collection. This is prob my most popular video, as people still watch it, and giggle in horror at who I may be. Don’t believe everything you see on the internet, folks. To return the favor, I did a video spotlighting Eric as a Filipino comics collector.

To round out the end of 2023, I had attended SF Expo in San Francisco. Surprisingly, I didn’t post a video recapping the the day. I had gone down, with my buddy Jerry, with the main goal to meet Peter Cullen (famous for voicing Optimus Prime of the Transformers), which we successfully did. I had Peter sign my Transformers: The Movie (1986) steelbook blu-ray disc box. (I’m planning for Susan Blu, of Arcee fame, to sign it too, some day.) Then we experienced Henry Winkler and William Shatner, just freestyle speaking, on stage… separately, not together. Then walked through artists alley to meet John Giang (bought one of a planned 3-piece xenomoprh art set), Gene Luen Yang (I apologized to him for not having watched “American Born Chinese” yet. I didn’t have the heart to tell him I canceled my Disney+, for the second time now), and my Bay Area artist and good buddy, Steven Yu. I also bumped into Gerald Pilare of the Lumpia movie crew, and finally met the director and creator, Patricio Ginelsa, with a signed copy of Lumpia: With a Vengeance. I’m sure I have a bunch of photos and footage hoarded on my phone, of this event, but I’ve bombarded you folks with too much of the same ol’ same ol’ — nerd collecting, celeb signings, and geek culture indulgence. I’m not saying I stopped, just taking a quick break, and will be back with more of this NerdCulture stuff with a new angle and a twist or two.

2024: AI and Me

On occasion, I put on cyberpunk music or some YouTuber talking about philosophy and science fiction books, as ASMR, to help me sleep. Why did I bring this up? And why do I do this? It’s just more nerdy ways that I download stuff into my brain. Does this work? Prob not. But it helps me sleep.

“The fear that AI marks the end of human creativity is a failure of imagination.”
Erich Archer, filmmaker

As I mentioned earlier, I’ve been playing a lot with AI stuff. Of course, everyone speaks of OpenAI’s ChatGPT. But, the my first experience with AI was creating odd, weird images with MidJourney. I’m tempted to show various progressions of images I had created throughout last year, but I’m restraining myself, from showing off “work-in-progress” stuff in this age of hyper-sharing of #TooMuchContent. I’ve even created funky videos and fake trailers with Runway AI, InVideo, and Kaiber. Most are subtle, in my posts, but most are practice drafts, that are hidden, prob, most will never lay eyes on. Besides an occasional touch-up, utilizing AI, with some parts of videos or images, on my social medias, my first (almost) full-on creation with AI was an XMas short titled “Santa Time Traveling to the Edge of the Universe“.

I gotta say, the experience exposing myself to this stuff has blown my mind, the possibilities to augment and enhance human potential swirls and swims in my mind. Not only on creativity, but just upskilling your writing, programming, cooking, finance, and/or most of whatever you may need an extra brain boost on. I may be bias because my background is in tech and web development, and my love of scifi, but immersing myself in this stuff, I feel we’re heading towards less Skynet and more building a relationship with the robots to be our friendly assistants.

In early Feb, of this year, I had attended my first AI conference: Aiify.io, with my buddy, Anthony Garcia. It was a small, Bay Area event, but it opened my eyes to what the industry and community are thinking… gave me a feel of the current pulse of the next tech revolution. The consensus seems to be, that in about a year, most of us will have some form of assistant agents. What does that mean? May need a little more time to figure it out, but I’m optimistic. Ever since, I have, at least, two AI projects in the works, not creativity related (at least, not yet) but I’m still learning where to go with the tech. And, I will be attending more AI and robot conventions and conferences, in the coming days. Stay tuned here.

In context, with the emergence of the Internet and the evolution of social media platforms, helped us all connect faster and gone global. I’m sure most of us have experienced the same, tech has helped me meet, in-person, as I love to travel, with various people throughout locally and international, having one-on-one convos that come off like podcasts and deeper human relationships (not without imperfections and flaws, but, still human, nonetheless). Who knows what next-level can AI bring… but I’m curious (without a cat involved). Okay, it’s what’s been dancing around in my brain. No promises, but I’ll still be here, and back again in (hopefully, less) than six months. Thanks again for reading.

Don’t get paranoid, but this blog post may not be me. It may be an A.I. /wink, wink, robot eye shutters/

*the header image is captured from KRON TV 4 news report of SF Expo 2023, where I and Jerry was waiting to speaking with Gene Luen Yang, in the background of the cosplayer they were interviewing

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