The End of the Age of Automobiles?


I had been reading this article and one thing that caught my eye is the author John Pearley Huffman is correct.

These times where car ownership is becoming an absolute luxury with all the push towards expensive insurance and high gas prices are driving the next generation away from the automobile. The arrival of pop music, smartphones and public influence is almost incredible in how they are telling everyone to get off the roads in gas-burners and take public transit. Even in RGSS, the Driver’s Ed program that is held ever since i entered has stopped last year, just as I received my driver’s license. At school, there are only a handful of friends I know of that shares a similar enthusiasm to cars as me, with the rest almost treating them as non-existent tools of transportation from getting from A to B.

And I’ve yet to mention that some of my friends don’t even have a license, and are honestly not even as so much as bothered by it.

As an automotive enthusiast and a secondary student passionate of driving, I feel sad.

Do you feel that the government should try to generate some hype or should car manufacturers do something to stop this from happening? Or is the future of road transportation would be reduced to nothing but public transit who in all respect, is never early and unanimously strike day after day?

Leave your comments below.



Automotive Acronym Humour

It should be no surprise that I’m an automotive enthusiast. I’ve recently stumbled onto a BMW website where it reports that BMW drivers on average gets laid more often than any other brand. Someone responded with a quirky comment saying that BMW must have stood for BMW = “Brings Me Women”.

After falling off my chair laughing for the next hour, i found much more humourous car company acronyms. I hope automotive guys enjoy this as much as i do.

Here are some of my favourites: ironically some of them are quite accurate…

KIA – Kills In Accidents – Applies to older models

BMW – Brings Me Women – Proven

FIAT – Failure In Automotive Technology – Very Very True. Remember the 1970’s “Fix It Again Tony?”

FORD – For Only Rough Drivers – Remember ‘Built Tough’?

HYUNDAI – Hope You Understand Nothing’s Drivable And Inexpensive – Not really… I think the Genesis Coupe is a good aversion

VOLVO – Very Odd Looking Vehicular Object – Volvos look ugly to me…personal opinion

PORSCHE – Proof Of Rich Spoiled Children Having Everything – All 911s cost upwards of 6 figures…won’t stop me from wanting one

AUDI – An Undescribed Driving Inspiration – Look at it, look at the R8…*disbelief*

MERCEDES – Most Eccentric Rich Capitalists Enjoy Driving Expensive Sedans – S-Classes make up 90% of these…I drive a C-Class though

CHEVROLET – Can Hear Every Valve Rattle On Long Extended Trips – Remember the 1980-2010 Chevys?

CHRYSLER – Car Having Really Yucky Stupid Lazy Engine Runs – The Sebring…

DODGE – Dangerous On Days Gears Engage – Remember how the RT/SRT8s tranny disintegrates over time?

HONDA – Happy Owners Never Drive Anything else – Anyone who’s driven a NSX/S2K/Integra/Prelude or any Type-Rs would understand this

JAGUAR – Junk Always Going Under At Repair Shop – Anyone used to own or knows someone who owned a Type X?

OLDSMOBILE – Old Ladies Driving Slow, Making Others Behind Infuriatingly Late Everyday – This brand’s demographic is older than Buicks…

VW: Virtually Worthless – You know you want an Audi, but can’t.


Small Note: Change of Subjects

Zero Approach is my first blog creation since the class “technological design” in school made this a requirement.

Since that course would be ending in the next week, i would probably move away from technological design and more onto my own freestyle comments and likes.

Sorry for those who want more AutoCAD and architectural designs.


Tech Savvy: Nissan 300ZX/Fairlady Z

As a car enthusiast, one of the many things I appreciate  is car designs that date well into the future, meaning that despite a car to be made in the 1980s, the aesthetics is still something I would like to see on our roads today, in 2011. Not only the design, but the car must also be one that achieves great strides in performance, innovations and future-thinking into account. These are the qualities that separate a normal run-off-the-mill commuter to an absolute technological masterpiece.

Not often does many manufacturers this right. But once in a while, things like the 1989-200 Nissan 300ZX Z32 (Fairlady Z in Japan) comes out. This car is probably one of the few most technological and over engineered car to be made into production in the last decade.

This 2 door sports coupe is one of the first cars in the world that utilized a supercomputer and a CAD software to be designed. Nissan employed the Cray II supercomputer to ground up design the Z32 model using the previous Z31 as a base. The flowing lines and aggressive looks are still kept along with a powerful presence on the road even today. Another amazing technological aspect for its time was the independent multi-link suspension setup that helps control the car better in the corners, another rarity in this time period when most vehicles used torsion beams and solid axles. Then comes the Super-HICAS system, which allowed all 4 wheels to steer in the direction of the steering wheel angle, improving overall agility and nimbleness of the car. The car also was one of the older cars to feature an advanced Twin Turbo setup which gave the relatively small 3.0L V6 engine as much power as a 1995 Mustang GT 4.6L V8. This setup was also featured intercoolers which cooled the pressurized air in the engine to make the air more dense, another rarity in this era.

All these technological breakthroughs are what makes the 300ZX an amazing piece of technology for its time. It is not often we have these technologies leaving the prototype stages due to costs and market demand, but sometimes these creations could be what the future would have as commonplace. It is great to see what the future sometimes has in stores…

Nissan 300ZX/Fairlady Z Twin Turbo

A Classic piece of engineering

AutoCAD: Drawing the Future

AutoCAD (Stands for Computer Aided Design for those uninformed) has been a useful workhorse in the technological design industry since its inception. I would have to agree that current manufacturing methods are becoming almost impossible to carve out every detail by hand, at least, without the scalpel-like precision of this amazing piece of software.

Let’s admit; not everyone who is good at drawing likes to draw houses or blueprint designs. On the other hand, not all engineers could draw with pen and pencil. The end result of all that is an uncoordinated design that was engineered in the most unorthodox method due to the styling constraints of the designer. (In layman’s terms; the design doesn’t match well with the internals of the engineered bits.)

This trend disappeared with the help of AutoCAD, which revolutionized technological design forever. Now, both designers and engineers can work in harmony with this special software that allows the creation of prototypes and sketches without hassle of constraints. Because AutoCAD is more precise in arranging designs, it can allow full-scale prototypes to be designed and changes could be easily made with one or two clicks.

Also, the use of Computer aided design also opens up a new form of design whereas free-handed design may have a hard time doing. Because computer aided design also allows the application of sciences to be implemented, houses are now much more resistant of cross winds, planes are more aerodynamic and cars are much more efficient. Not to mention computer designed technologies also allow complex shapes and forms to be created accurately with a high degree of fit & finish.

Some say technology is the future, but technology could only be so appealing with a design that recalls the 20th century. In order for the future to come, technological design must also be brought up to date with the future. With computers more powerful and accessible than ever, it is time for designers to move away from pencils to tablets.

CAD Engine Designing

Where Design meets Science

Work Habits & Skills: Tools for Life

Sometimes, things learned inside a classroom could come in handy in a real life scenario. To be honest, this doesn’t occur frequently, but you’ll be glad you’ve been paying attention when it does.

For example, the Skills Passport that is taken in most tech courses follow this example to the top. Skills Passport provides you with the skills required not only to solve technical issues, but majority of problems in life as a whole.

Reading & writing skills, document use, computer use and oral communication are all important not only in school, but when you have to go to an interview or even participate in volunteer work, all these skills are as important as the success that you will have in the job. All these skills could be applied to almost anything you do in life. Be successful at them, the results would reflect that in life.

Other similar skills include numeracy skills and thinking skills. Add everything together, and suddenly life just feels that much easier to live through. It becomes important that all of these skills should be acquired as fast as possible in school so they could be refined and composed throughout post-secondary locations. After completion, finding a job/career with such skills along with the qualifications would boast great advantages in the labour market in the modernized 21th century, where fast adaption at whatever the employer throws at you, you’ll be able to not only hit it, but send it as well as their expectations out of the park.

Building Trades: More work than you probably imagine

After watching a short but important video today of the skills and importance of knowing how to place and design a standard two-story house today, this post is imminent for those who think skilled trades is easier than getting into University; it isn’t.

The assignment sounded simple enough; watch a video about the trades and requirements of building a house, and procedures you must take before proceeding to purchase materials or even lift a hammer or pencil. The difficult part is that the person talking in the video talks like a motormouth; there was barely time to write down the consecutive answers given.

The main things that the clip shows us is as house builders, many operations must be done before the house could be built. First, the land that the house builds on must be visited, reviewed and logged. The log should include ‘baseline’ items (Natural Resources, Vegetation, Infrastructure…) and factors (Zoning, Site Access, Sunlight, Drainage…) before considering to build.

After choosing to build, construction plans (5 of them) would need to be designed and drawn to outline the structure. The plans also have to correspond to the building codes of the area, as well as fit the lifestyles of the people living there (It fits their demand). Key points to look for is good use of space, practicality, and aesthetics. During this step, it may also be wise to hire an Architect and a Civil Engineer to consult with.

After designing the plans, a permit is then needed from the building department. All drafts, specs, and plans must be submitted in order to get a permit.

After the said permit, it is ‘green light’ to order parts and start building. Annoyingly long and painful process and not even a nail was hammered in yet…

Lots of Work Involved

Drawing Plans