• Who am I?

    I am Qrystal; or at least, that's my dot-name! Har har. (My name is really Crystal, but that's not as internet-searchable; hence, switching the C for the little-used letter Q.)

    I am here because I enjoy writing. I do this mostly for myself, but I also have a passion for helping others learn things from the things I write. Now that I am done my Ph.D. in Physics, I am stepping away from academic research so that I can indulge in some creative ways to share my knowledge and inspire the appreciation of scientific thinking in others. I am also working as a tutor, which is one of the jobs I've most enjoyed doing in my life so far.

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  • Our Northern Ontario Camping Destination

    Thursday, June 9th, 2011

    I kinda wanted to share where we’re going camping, but at the same time, I also wanted to keep it secret… so I grabbed the Google Satellite imagery from the area just to give an idea of the terrain. I will say, though, that it’s deep in Northern Ontario, a little north of halfway between [...]

    Beer cozies

    Thursday, June 4th, 2009

    In doing some research for my Northern Ontario trip, I came across the following awesomeness: Beer can cozies, put to the test! The main takeaway: “Depending on their material, beer can cozies can be effective in keeping beer cool even in extremely hot weather. The two cozies that performed the best employed a layer of [...]

    Laser Tag – What Fun!

    Monday, October 27th, 2008

    Laser Tag was amazingly fun! We’re all gung-ho about going again. The arena was big enough to get lost in, and it was all blacklit as shown in the picture here. It was maze-like, with lots of walls and turns and passageways and multiple ramps up to the second and third levels, but it also [...]

    Playful Cleverness, Applied

    Friday, August 29th, 2008

    While the word ‘hacker’ to refer to someone who enjoys playful cleverness is most often applied to computer programmers, it is sometimes used for people who apply the same attitude to other fields. Hacker (free and open source software) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia OMG, this and a few of the other Wikipedia articles have [...]

    Sometimes haikus don’t make sense

    Wednesday, August 27th, 2008

    “Haikus are easy but…” Threadless T-Shirt – by Rolf Nelson I wants it! My birthday’s only three months away… hmmmm… time to get a-hintin’! :D (If any generous strangers out there would like to send me a Girly Medium-size shirt, I can pick up packages at the Physics department office in University of Windsor, Ontario, [...]

    How to Really Have Fun on a Roller Coaster

    Friday, July 18th, 2008

    I am SO going to take a chessboard with me, next time I go to an amusement park!!!  This page shows a bunch of great images of people living out the dream of xkcd comic #249.

    Am I a Nerd, Geek, or Dork?

    Friday, July 18th, 2008

    According to the The Nerd, Geek, or Dork Test test, I am Pure Nerd: 78% Nerd, 17% Geek, 30% Dork … and as confirmation, I’m nerdy enough to be bothered that the percentages don’t add up to 100%! Are the three supposed to be taken as independent scales, despite the fact that the test is [...]

    Words as Visual Art

    Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

    Who hasn’t wanted to make a random mish-mash of words look all colourful and fun, in order to give some kind of visual impact to a message or idea?  Wordle can do it for you.  Just watch out for how dangerously fun this site is…!!! Despite the danger to my productivity, I thank @shivian for [...]

    My Aztec Daysign

    Wednesday, July 9th, 2008

    I’m mildly amused by the Aztec Daysign for the date of my birth, and the description of its meaning: “Xochitl is a day for creating beauty and truth, especially that which speaks to the heart who knows it will one day cease to beat. Xochitl reminds us that life, like the flower, is beautiful but [...]