Dec 16 2017

Day 16 – Director Krennic’s Imperial Shuttle

Director Krennic's Imperial Shuttle

I’m not sure if this is my favorite build from the 2017 LEGO Advent calendar so far, but if not then it’s a close second to the luggabeast. What I can say for sure is that it took me longer to put together Director Krennic’s imperial shuttle than everything from the first 15 days combined. It turned out the instructions were mostly useless in illustrating how to build and attach the wings and tail. Through trial and error I believe I got it right. It really is a cool build although interestingly, it’s the first one so far that isn’t able to stand on its own. The stand in the photos was added by me.

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Dec 15 2017

Day 15 – Snow Blower

First Order Snowtrooper and Snow Blower

I understand that LEGO has to include cutesy seasonal builds in the Advent calendar, but being honest, I can’t remember any that I’ve cared much about. I almost started another supply box rant, but after giving it some thought I have had a change of heart. Maybe a snow blower really is not that off topic.  After all, how did the First Order keep the landing pads, assembly areas, and paths between buildings clear of snow if not with a snow blower. I imagine there was some lowly Snowtrooper busted down to private after having been caught mocking emo Kylo Ren whose job it was to go out clear the snow away every morning so the real troops could do their jobs.

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Dec 14 2017

Day 14 – First Order Snowtrooper

It’s déjà vu all over again. Wait. Nevermind. This one has a different helmet. Day 14 of the 2017 LEGO Advent calendar is a First Order snowtrooper. They didn’t get much screen time in The Force Awakens, but it’s a cool minifigure nonetheless. In keeping with the kinder, gentler First Order LEGO seems to be pushing, this one, like the First Order stormtrooper that preceded him, is weaponless. I guess they could share the blaster from supply box day, unless he’s the one who is supposed to use the wrench.  It’s not like he fits in yesterday’s snowspeeder.

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Dec 13 2017

Day 13 – First Order Snowspeeder

The First Order Snowspeeder is formally known as a Light Infantry Utility Vehicle (LIUV). If you even knew that this was a snowspeeder, congratulations. The casual Force Awakens viewer might not even recognize it since the scene it was featured in was cut from the movie (although the deleted scene is out there in the ether for anyone that wants to see it). LEGO doesn’t seem phased by JJ’s decision to ax it seeing as they released a snowspeeder kit, a Microfighters snowspeeder, and have now included it in their 2017 Advent calendar.

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Dec 12 2017

Day 12 – The Millennium Falcon

This isn’t just any Corellian YT-1300f light freighter, this the fastest ship in the galaxy. The ship that did the Kessel Run in less than twelve parsecs. Owned by Lando Calrissian, but gambled away. Piloted by smuggler turned rebel general turned smuggler, the late Han Solo. Now under the stewardship of Rey. This is day 12 of the LEGO Star Wars Advent Calendar. This is the Millennium Falcon.

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Dec 11 2017

Day 11 – Luggabeast

Remember yesterday when I insinuated that my lack of interest in the Unkar’s Thug minifigure was directly proportional to the miniscule screen time the thugs had? Apparently that is not a hard and fast rule, because I don’t think the luggabeast was in The Force Awakens for any longer, and it is my favorite build so far from the 2017 LEGO Star Wars Advent calendar. The fact that the luggabeast  is a heavily armored, cybernetically enhanced, rhinoceros-looking quadruped is most of the reason, but I’m digging the color scheme, too.

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Dec 10 2017

Day 10 – Unkar’s Thug

Behind door number 10 of the LEGO Star Wars Advent calendar is … the Grim Reaper? Actually, I know this is one of Jakku junkboss Unkar Plutt’s “thugs.” I only know this because I had to look it up the first time I got one of these minifigures with the Rey’s Speeder set (#75099). My excitement about this minifigure, like the amount of time we see the thugs in The Force Awakens, is minimal. It’s better than a box with a wrench in it, but barely. Continue reading

Dec 09 2017

Day 9 – Rey’s Speeder

With Rey’s Speeder, Day 9 finds the LEGO Star Wars Advent calendar back on track after yesterday’s disappointing build.  Built from scratch using parts she scavenged from the starship graveyard that are the wastelands of Jakku, the speeder served her well ferrying parts to the Niima outpost to sell.  She left it behind when she hastily left the planet with Finn on the Millennium Falcon, and I’m wondering if we’ll see it again if she ends up back on Jakku in The Last Jedi. In 6 days I will know the answer to that question.

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Dec 08 2017

Day 8 – Supply Box

Supply Box

Look, I love LEGO, but I have to call a spade a spade. Day 8 of the 2017 LEGO Star Wars Advent calendar is a box. A box that holds a wrench and has a blaster mounted on it. “Remember in [INSERT ANY STAR WARS MOVIE TITLE HERE] that supply box? How f’ing cool was that?” said no one ever. I was looking for the First Order Stormtrooper’s blaster yesterday, and here it is. I didn’t even realize he was missing his wrench, too.

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Dec 07 2017

The Pumping Lemma for Regular Languages

There are two versions of the Pumping Lemma. One is for context free grammars and one is for regular languages. This post is about the latter. The Pumping Lemma describes a property that all natural languages share. While it cannot be used by itself to prove that any given language is regular, it can be used to prove, often using proof by contradiction, that a language is not regular.  In this sense the Pumping Lemma provides a necessary condition for a language to be regular but not a sufficient one.

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