When i get back to LB maybe i should use an external tool (notepad + CTRL V) to do my blog posts... The time it takes to transfer you from the Blogger dashboard to the "create post" page can sometimes drag like hell.. Not nice.. not nice at all.

I'm in bigly right now. Actually I've been here for 4 days now. An early Christmas vacation (from the thesis that I'm supposed to be doing) was not really something that I planned though it did cross my mind before I went home. Good thing I was able to jenoa in advance...


Microsoft (MSN) has released the beta version of the MSN Toolbar suite (in Google terms, think Toolbar+Deskbar+Desktop Search). A part of me is tempted to echo a slashdot poster's sentiments: Google should have patented some their stuff. I'm too lazy to put up full review of the tool so I will just link you to it :p The implementation is much more fancier (i like it better) than Google's Desktop Search, though it also means that you're required to use IE (not that it's that baaaaaaaaad). For example, the full search results are presented in a manner similar to Windows Explorer's detailed view, with the option to sort results based on different criteria (columns). The deskbar (search bar in your Windows task bar) integration is also something worth noting, featuring a live search (find as you type, a la Spotlight) and Grouped results (eg Applications, Documents, Pictures, etc.). I can't help though to pick on item no.9 of a review guide made by a Microsoft Geek blogger/Evengelist, which reads:

9) Does your engine integrate into the apps you use most often? For instance, if you use Outlook all day long, like I do, does your search engine force you to leave Outlook and go someplace else to do searches?

I'm sure the reason why he included this is because their "toolbar suite" includes a toolbar for your outlook, which is really nice, until you start searching using the Outlook msn toolbar and it fires up an IE window for the search result.... (Oh, we don't force you to leave Outlook and go somewhere else to do your searches, but we do force you to leave outlook and go somewhere else to see your search results, which are two different things you know...) tf!.


From the blog of Adam Bosworth. Formerly of Microsoft and Bea. And now working at Google...



is the number of security flaws recently found in Windows XP SP2.

Without going much into the details of the exploits (and I don't have a plan of seeking knowledge of them right now anyway) this only means one sure thing for all of us Windows users: another wave of viruses and exploits are coming. Be prepared.

He's the shiznit

To be honest, I felt guilty when he said something about the lack of moral support during the Finals round of the Top Coder Open finals; Almost a little about the faulty net connection (we have a lot of bandwidth wasted at night here at Oi) but I know Cel is more comfortable using his home PC. (Damn, i suddenly realize, I could have at least helped fix his pc's power supply problem...)

Well, the only consolation I get is knowing that when he reads about this (hi cel), he probably won't agree on the things I said I feel guilty about, or the fact that I feel guilty all. He'd probably just wear that familiar look on his face: ("eh bakit naman?"). That's cel, (buti na lang hehe)

So cel, for a job well done. Congrats man. Someday I will proudly tell people: I used to sleep (or wake) at the sound of his oooh's and aaah's at night. Yeah, kinky I know,but you know what could top that? He makes that sound while he is coding. The passion man, the passion...

By the way, did you know that Cel looks good on a maroon polo shirt? I also created a photo set on flickr for some pics of cel that i "stole" from the TopCoder site , but if you have time and you want to do some "ShinduHikaru hunting", you can browse the official TopCoder Open Photos page.

That's all.

Microsoft launced their beta MSN Search

Hmmm. so that's probably why Google announced their updated index. A little rain on Microsoft's parade, which, as I learned just now have announced the beta of their search engine.

The msn search adds a new twist in advanced search, re-christened as Search builder. I think it aims to make advanced searches more accessible for ordinary internet users. Search customization fields are presented in sections, one tab at a time. A very interesting addition in MSN search not found in Google and Yahoo's advanced searches is a way for users to tweak the ranking of the results page, based on three criteria: exactness of match, popularity and freshness of the result. As I remember just now, a similar feature is present when searching in Google News (the ability to sort results by relevance or by date). Microsoft also says that your location, which can be set on the settings page, can have an effect on the search results that you will get.

We have yet to see though if these features can create a serious dent on Google's share of the search advertising market. At its current form, Google is pretty much hard to beat, and that is good, because if Microsoft or Yahoo is indeed capable of doing so, we users can expect a lot of good things to come that will make searching for information on the web a lot easier.

By the way, as I was making this blog post, i came upon Yahoo's new search page (not the Yahoo home page), hmm. Can you spot the difference between that and Google's? Well it was pretty hard so to help me and to make the circus a lot more fun, i tried to search for it (using MSN search of course!). Don't click on that link. It's nonsense. I have to stop here...

8 Billion/Firefox start page

There has been talks before of a new Google bot making tours on people's websites. Today we see the result: Google has increased their index site to 8 Billion pages. But then you already knew that...


Okay, for those who have installed Firefox 1.0, you probably noticed that the new Firefox start page is actually a special Google page. The decision to include a new star page was made after a survey done by Mozillazine found out that a lot of Firefox users have a blank home page (nothing beats the simplicity and loading time of about:blank, i guess). The new start page is heaven sent. I was having a dilemma on what to set as a homepage for Firefox: a firefox-related page which will raise awareness of the product, or Google (no explanation neccessary). Now the mozilla start page rocks.

Actually, the more interesting part of it is what conspiracy theories people could come up with on a possible Google-Firefox relationship. Okay, i know a similar(ish) page exists for ie, google.com/ie , but hey, Conspiracies are cooler, and c'mon, don't tell me that the geek in you didn't almost pee in his pants at the sight of those three words beatifully juxtaposed: Google-Firefox relationship... brrrr

Gmail POP

Google is adding POP support to Gmail. IMAP fans, (and future fans, which includes me) we're out of luck, no IMAP support yet.

Celsus da man!

it's about time.

Lazy? Who's Lazy?

Bullet Points
  • As nikki said, Firefox 1.0 is coming. It's upgrade time tonight!
  • Also, Fedora Core 3 just came out! Frank, pano ba yan? Download ko na muna to?
  • For the widget fans, Konfabulator, the widget app for Mac OS X, is coming to Windows (they had to seek for the greener, and bigger pasture, after Apple announced their upcoming new OS Tiger which will include a feature very similar to Konfabulator - Dashboard)
  • Veggie boy updated his blog! yey! :D
  • Yeah, i know it's late, but i just want to welcome Celsus. Question cel: i know that your blog is not listed on your profile, but since your blog is almost famous now after your All Saint's post, can we then add you to the pisay 89 blog roll?
  • Oh yeah, pal is on. Brave. By the way, I don't know what you did wrong man, but i think you messed up your layout.
  • Jem, techie posts can sometimes be boring. Fun stuffs are always cool (though i'm yet to solve your flash puzzles).


Bullet Points. (When you're too lazy to organize your post into a more readable form)
  • I just came back from bicol last Saturday night and well well, it suddenly felt green around here! Didn't really know that unix geeks can be soooo horny...
  • Hmm. i love this. almost a week of no internet. Which means a lot of stuff to do and read online! wohoo!
  • I alread said yes in my email but I'll still say it again here Frank, yup, i got all 4 cds (the 4th being a recovery cd) of FC2.
  • Shiny new iPods! Black is the new white, according to U2.
  • Firefox RC1 came out 4 days ago kids, but if you're already using the Preview Release and you're not much into bug-testing, might as well stick to your version and wait for the Final Release.
  • SpreadFirefox's campaign to raise funds for a full-page New York Times Ad is a success. On the day Mozilla releases Firefox 1.0, the names of roughly 10,000 contributors to the campaign will grace the full-page ad in NYT along with official announcement of Firefox 1.0.
  • It might be your mom's sinigang, or spaghetti, or pesto...as for me, it's my mom's adobo-the best there is. Ubos na nga eh.
  • In my haste (again, as usual) to turn-over ownership of Pisay98 group in Google Groups 2 to myself (hehe, from my Yahoo email to my Gmail account) I deleted the group a minute before I realize that you can now have multiple owners. I may have wait for a few days before the group name becomes available again.
  • I'm thinking if now is a good time to start to migrate to Google Groups 2 (for photon). Jaemark, you're thoughts? Everyone can really benefit from ad-free email messages. Problem is, for other perks (polls, photos, files) we may have to still rely on Yahoo Groups. (not that we *really use them)
  • Jaemark, Congratulations on your new Job. Makikita ka din ba namin sa Mulawin?


Hokay... Today is quiz day!

You are .ppt  You present yourself well, but co-workers still find you bording and annoying.  Keep it brief and you'll be  well-liked.
Which File Extension are You?

Update: Added another one, courtesy of Niks

You are Palm OS. Punctual, straightforward and very useful.  Your mother wants you to do more with your life like your cousin Wince, but you're happy with who you are.
Which OS are You?

50 more minutes...

The Return of the King Special Extended DVD.

It will be available in December in the US, according to the LOTR official site.

Preview links: Small(4mb) Large(9mb)

Another reason to love Firefox

it's soooo cute.

Image from Natur-Lexikcon.com

Name: Red Panda
Scientific name: Ailurus fulgens
Habitat: Red Pandas are found in the temperate forests of the Himalayas and some high mountain areas of China and Myanmar (Burma).

more stuff about the Red Panda

Redmond, we have a problem...

The Google Desktop Search beta.

Learn more...
See it in action...
Download and Install...*

*Google Desktop search requires Windows XP or Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 and above, and you must have Administrator privileges.

Arstechnica has a brief but excellent post on how it works. Read it here

You gotta love this...

RFC 1149, and the famous implementation. For the impatient, here's a direct link to the pics of the momentous event.

And what would you do if i tell you that they're planning for a second one? Sigh... too much time in their hands....

A note for the non-techies:
i'm sorry if I have not provided any relevant introduction. Giving one would have spoiled the fun.

Jeffrey Veen: Millionaires Making People Smile

Jeffrey Veen: Millionaires Making People Smile: "Artists are responsible, because for some reason we think we should be millionaires for making people smile. But I don't worry too much, because it will be over soon. There won't be a market for making people smile because kids will just do it for free."

Indexing the world, one page at a time

Google has officially launched their new service, Google print.

Here's how it works, in a nutshell:

  1. Publishers submit their books to Google
  2. Google scans the books for free, and adds it to their index.
  3. When a user does a Google search, books that contain their search terms—will show up in the search results.
  4. The user can click on the book link to go to a google print page of a book
The official Google Print. site should give you the rest of the details.

Since Book results show up only when you search for the right keyword, it took a while before I actually saw an actual Google Print Book page.

What could be better than being the man wo started Blogger?

Ev and Sara at the Lake
Originally uploaded by evhead.
Having a girlfriend as hot as her. :)

Evhead, the man who started blogger.
Sara, his girlfriend (the woman behind the man...)

The Men

David J. Gross
Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara, USA,

H. David Politzer
California Institute of Technology (Caltech), Pasadena, USA, and

Frank Wilczek
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, USA.

2004 Nobel Prize in Physics, "for the discovery of asymptotic freedom in the theory of the strong interaction"

Press Release

A few notes and a Wish Item about the new Contacts

As soon as Frank's comments came in to my inbox this afternoon, I immediately noticed that my Gmail got updated too. Everything but the atom feed was there, and as I have said before, the new contacts was the best of all the updates, at least in my opinion. Here are a few comments about the New Contacts.

  • They decided to get rid of the "Are you sure you want to delete X?" warning notice when you're deleting a contact. I like the new way of things, since Alert notices can sometimes become sooo annoying anyway(WTF? of course I want to delete my contacts! I just pressed delete didn't I?). Well, Gmail users will just become more careful in deleting their contacts according to this article.

  • When I add a secondary email to a contact and then use the auto-complete feature, the secondary email doesn't show up. They should appear! They can just put it after the main email address.

I forgot what my other comments were. I'll just update this entry as soon as I remember them.

Now on to my wish list item.

Live contacts search : Why did they leave this out? If you have live autocomplete in the Compose view, then there should be one in the Contacts View. Here's a possible implementation:

When there are more than one contacts matching a live query, the default action (ie a user strikes Enter) is to show all contacts matching the query. When a unique contact is found as a user types, the dropdown list will just display the matching contact and pressing Enter will go directly to that match.

One other thing: if a live search like this exists, the contact's search field will be spared from the browser's default auto-complete. Afterall, why should my Google searches be suggested when I'm looking for my contacts?

So what are your thoughts on Gmail's new features? Do you think that a live search should be added to the contacts? If yes, then suggest it to the Gmail team.


At your ten year high school reunion... by robbiewriter
Your school name
Your name
Your job will beCorrupt Politician
You will be worth$515,820
Everyone will think youUsed to have a crush on them
Quiz created with MemeGen!

New Gmail features!

I just checked my Gmail-users label and saw some interesting news. Some users' Gmail accounts have been updated with new features. My gmail doesn't have the features yet, but here they are, based on the conversations from the list, and arranged in increasing degree of cool factor (my own opinion of course)

  • Drafts folder.
  • Email forwarding (you can choose which messages to forward by using filters).
  • Atom feeds for your unread messages.
  • Beefed-up contacts.

I was tempted to post some screenshots but I don't want to be a spoiler. Let's just wait for the updates.

1980 all over again?

Image of Mt. St. Helens Volcano
Scientists have warned that Mt. St. Helens is likely to erupt again very soon. The threat level has been raised to "volcano alert", the highest eruption risk level indicating there is a risk to life and property in the area.

[from BBC news]

Google Labs Aptitude Test

Want to work at Google? Or maybe just pretend that you can? Take the Google Labs Aptitude Test!

Strangerhood - Made with Sims 2

The Strangerhood - a Machinima made with The Sims 2.
Machinima: a quickly growing method of animation where people make short length films and use videogame engines for the animation instead of drawing by hand or using traditional computer animation.

Season 1 just started, and the introduction video is now available for download (8 mb - quicktime version, 4.1-Windows Media version).

You can also check out their first project: red vs blue which was made using Halo. It became such a hit (they're on episode 39 now) that they got invited to the Bungie HQ at the Microsoft Campus to play Halo 2. You can read more about their visit to Bungie HQ here

VNC babeh!

For the non-techies:VNC is a way to access a your desktop from another computer (it's actually an acronym for Virtual Network Computing, if that helps) Say you want to control Computer A from Computer B, you can install a VNC server in Computer A, install a VNC viewer in Computer B, then use the viewer (from computer B) to Connect to the VNC Server (running in Computer A).

Okay, now that i've put the geek-speak out of the table, i just discovered that KDE's Remote Desktop Client works out of the box with the Real VNC here at Oi Pinoi! Neat-o... Standards rocks! Except for a few quirks, (when switching from windowed mode to Full screen mode, i have to toggle scaling on and off first to make it work) the client worked great! The gui was simple and user-friendly, i really appreciated it's one-click way of toggling between Control and View-only mode and the presence of a simple yet functional toolbar.

Screenshot of VNC client in Fedora
VNC yey
Originally uploaded by emelgeek.


Hmmkay. Coke or Pepsi? Boxers or briefs? Firefox or Internet Explorer?

Hard choices call for hard decisions. Good thing there's Googlefight. The tool for the undecided, and for those who just want a third opinion.

Go fight!

If i would recommend a Linux distro to H5 people

this would be it....

Image Hosted by The Image Hosting

Woot! a linux live cd dedicated to Go!

Download na to!

Hikaru-nix official site: http://www.hikarunix.org/index.html

SpreadFirefox.com's Great Gmail Give Away

Still hunting for that elusive gmail invite? Spreadfirefox is offering some. You just have to do something in return. But don't worry, it won't cost you your soul...

Hurry up though. As of this writing there are approximately 120 invites left.

For those gmail users who still have some invites left and are intending to donate the invites to the project, send the invitation to devlinks(at sign)gmail.com. See this post for more details

Tech Marketing 101

You know that someone is a good Firefox evangelist when he gets a Microsoft Geek Blogger to add a Get Firefox! button in his sidebar. (in exchange of a Service Pack 2 recommendation)


I can't prepare a surprise but i can make you shine in my blog for a day...

Happy Birthday Jem.

I Found Some Of Your Life

A man left his digicam's memory card in a New York cab. The one who found it created a blog about it and since July has been posting a picture a day from the memory card (complete with captions) in the aptly-named I Found Some Of Your Life blog. Be sure to hit the introduction first.

Excellent addition to your addictions list.


I'm not really sure. But i felt it just a minute ago.
Did you?

Firefox 1.0 Preview Release

Get Firefox!
Firefox 1.0 Preview release is here. Get yours here.
A quick glance on the new features:

  • Live Bookmarks
  • Improved Find
  • Improved UI and features in the Security department
  • Folder view in Manage Bookmarks
  • Strong encryption for stored passwords thru a Master password
  • Improved Compatibility for IE users
  • Better System Integration for GNOME users

You can read the official Relase notes here, but a more detailed low-down
has been provided by Neil's World.

Thunderbird and Mozilla suite were also updated. Thunderbird is now 0.8 and Mozilla is now 1.7.3
2.1 GB over the weekend. Not a bad way to use up Digitel's 256 KBps (advertised) bandwidth.

Wala lang. just making my first blogger post from a freshly-installed Fedora Core 2.

I have always been a linux fan, but my relationship with it (as a desktop OS) has always been a love-hate one. I usually grow tired of it after sometime when i begin to miss windows' idiotic convenience and ease of use. The fact that i don't have a machine that i can really call mine doesn't make it any better too. I just usually squat my Linux installations into other people's machines (and todays lucky pc is Wokstation Pinoi-01). That's why my files are literally fragmented across many computers. But the good thing about this sinusoidal behavior of using Linux desktop is that every fresh installation always bring some nice surprises and significant improvements in the usability arena. I'm currently using Gnome 2.6 as my Desktop (cherry: the best desktop environment there is, next to Apple's of course). I plan to add the KDE packages later when i get bored... hehe. The spatial Nautilus is something that i have really been looking foward to using, after being indoctrinated to the club by John Siracusa's mighty article.. (I have actually tried many times to configure Windows explorer to use theclassic behavior, just to get the hang of it). But honestly, the spatial experience can be quite hard and frustrating at fist. Old habits + deep folder organization = a desktop cluttered with windows that you'll need a miracle to keep up with it. Lesson learned (that Ed and the Master has also taught me): Keep it flat. The spatial nautilus and I will have our bonding time this week and i hope it turns out fine. That's all for now, i'll be meeting han in 30 minutes and I'm still wearing my shirt from yesterday... have to go.

A blog about a Linux Desktop wouldn't be complete without one. The obligatory (and hastily done)screenshot:


"Licensing our browser was a huge win for Spyglass. And it was a huge loss...

...The message became clear: We sold our browser technology to 120 companies, but one of them slaughtered the other 119"

If the "Get Firefox" image on my sidebar looks screwed to you (just below my profile) you're probably using IE. Click Help then About Internet.... You will then see a text box, the first line of which reads: Based on NCSA Mosaic.. Do you know the real story behind this sentence? If not, or maybe you're just not so sure, then I encourage you to read on.

The link is the story of one of the first browsers around: Spyglass. Good and interesting read. And probably, a surprising tale to some.

The story is here

The new iMac G5

Batteries not included



And you thought that making your Gmail your online storage makes you cool. Meet GmailFS.

GmailFS provides a mountable Linux filesystem which uses your Gmail account as its storage medium.

For a non-techie overview, GmailFS allows you to use your Gmail account as a linux storage (hmm, i wonder how many non-techie people uses linux...). To put it loosely, by using GmailFS, your Gmail account becomes your 1 Gig Drive, completely accessible using your Linux Desktop. You can read more details about the filesystem and a screenshot of it at work on the developer's site. Caption from the site:
The obligatory screenshot shows me reading my Gmail via a Firefox launched from an executable stored on the same Gmail account I'm checking my email on. Très nerdy.

What's next, Linux installation on your gmail account?



Blue, Flame... The New Apple iPod from HP

The new Apple iPod from HP wearing Tattoos

Months ago HP and Apple announced a deal allowing HP to sell HP-branded iPod. This came out both as a surprise to the industry and a smack in the face of Microsoft (HP has been a long time MS ally). Apple has been famously known for having a closed strategy in many of its products and the partnership with HP came as a sign that the Company is taking a different approach in its music platform strategy.

I was already wondering what happened to the deal since it took a while before the final HP ipod was announced. It turned out that HP intentionally pushed back the launching date when they learned of the 4th Generation iPod (already being in the works back then). And last Friday HP unveiled the iPod clone (the Miami Herald News is here). Contrary to initial announcements, the "Apple iPod from HP" will be offered by HP in its original clean white color, after finding out that the color has a strong importance to the iPod customers. HP is however offering a new twist in customizing the iPod: customized stickers (Tattoos). The designs shown above are just two of the many stickers that HP will be offering as a way to customize your iPod. (Don't worry, they're easy to put and peel off.)

Apple and Virgin

The Virgin Mega Online Music Store in France is accusing Apple of abusing its dominant market position by not allowing other companies access to FairPlay. It seems that Virgin France values interoperability strongly. That is until you visit their site using Firefox and discover that you need IE to view it. Them shit!

Browse by Name

This (actually a similar feature) has been one of the top features of the firefox browser that I have come to love. And now Google is bringing it to the IE world. Browse by name. So what is it really? And what's the big fuss about it that I'm taking time to blog about it? (I am supposed to be on hiatus...). If you decided to to finish reading my blog first before following my outside links, then here' s the thing about browse by name...

Browse by name is a functionality that's added to your IE browser when you install the Latest Gooogle Toolbar. If you don't know what the Google Toolbar is, you must have been under hibernation my friend and you're missing a lot, but I forgive you. Go here. If you don't know what Google is, then kudos to your Translator, for making you understand my blog despite the fact that you are not from Planet Earth. oseir08hondsfwehr093hfdsnf0892hfnf0h0fsdnf... got that?

Okay. Browse by name lets you type just words instead of complete URL's in your IE browser's addressbar, and Google will take you to the page where you want to go based on the word(s) you typed. If google is not sure about where you really want to go, it displays a google search of the word(s) you typed. For example, typing friendster (yes i know, my example sucks) will take you to the friendster homepage. On the other hand, typing vibester will take you to a search result of the keyword vibester. The burden of deciding whether to search or to take you directly to a page (and to which page) depends solely on Google's algorithm and the company has officially stated that no marketing force affects it. Although similar to the I'm feeling lucky feature, Browse by Name is different because as I have mentioned, there are two possible scenarios that can happen when you do a Browse by Name while only one sure thing happens for I'm feeling lucky (which always takes you directly to the actual web page of the number 1 search result). This is what makes Browse by Name better than Firefox's own version(which is actually just an implementation of the I'm feeling lucky feature of Google). Sometimes, the top result is not always the page that you want, so in this case hopefully Google gives you the search results rather than take you directly to the page. I have no doubt in the merits of the feature-I think it's a step forward in making the Web more relevant and easier to the user. The question now would be: will people discover it? and if yes, will they use it?

Update: Do you feel that Browse by Name is better than Firefox's default Im Feeling Lucky keyword service? Here's how to change the firefox settings to use the Browse by Name service:
  1. go to about:config of firefox (type about:config in Firerfox's address bar then hit enter)
  2. in the filter text field of the about:config page type keyword.to show all keyword-related preferences
  3. select keyword.URL from the list, right click on it and select modify from the context menu
  4. you will be prompted to Enter string value. Enter the string:
  5. That's it. You're Done. Happy Browsing-by-name!

Nintendo DS

Now the name is official and the hardware looks more sleek than ever. For the Nintendo geek-heads out there, head on the the site and bow your heads.

The DS will feature bluetooth and wifi for net access. But then you probably know that already.

Apple launches the new iPod.

New Features:
  • longer battery life - 12 hours according to Apple
  • Shuffle songs in the main menu
  • Save multiple On-The-Go Playlists
  • Adjust speed for Audiobooks
  • Sync and charge via included FireWire or USB 2.0 cables

Microsoft, Yahoo and AOL IM interconnection?

From The Inquirer: Microsoft is to announce a deal with Yahoo and AOL that will allow the three companies' Instant Messenging protocols to interconnect to each other. This is good news for everyone. It's about time that efforts be started to bridge the IM divide. I wonder what this means to Trillian and other third party Instant Messenging apps that at the moment fills the interconnection (or lack of) vacuum.

Happy Birthday Mozilla Foundation

Today marks Mozilla Foundation's 1st Birthday. Happy Birthday!

Nokia Lifeblog Beta

Another last bite of the cake before you close the fridge... Another puff of smoke before you totally let go... Another sip of your favorite drink when no one's looking... Another last blog post before I stop (temporarily).

Nokia's Lifeblog is now available. Ideally it works perfectly well with Nokia 7610, but for the rest of us without one, the PC version might suit us just fine...

From the Lifeblog website:

Nokia Lifeblog is a PC and mobile phone software combination that effortlessly keeps a multimedia diary of the items you collect with your mobile phone. Lifeblog automatically organizes your photos, videos, text messages, and multimedia messages into a clear chronology you can easily browse, search, edit, and save. Nokia Lifeblog does the work of organizing the items you create and receive, and you can also add notes throughout the day, or tag and update your favorites so they're always on your phone.

I'm currently downloading the beta software for the PC to test the app. An installer for 7610 is also available. Head on to the Nokia Lifeblog site to download your own. Word of warning: from the way it looks, the software is no light one. It requires Microsoft DirectX 9.

This blog post is my reward to myself for: making the ADC work (and ingeniously mounting it to the PC case)

No I am not Dead.

I am finally doing my thesis. I am officially on a blogging hiatus.

Sound the Horns...

Microsoft launched a preview of it's own home-grown search technology today. Along side with the launch, the Redmond giant also revamped its MSN search. As Arstechnica reported, the MSN search will still be using Yahoo's Inktomi search engine, however it will now have fewer ads to make the search results cleaner and more user-friendly.

Microsoft's entry to the search arena has been long anticipated by the industry since its presence makes the search engine war a lot more interesting. Having the money and resources, the company can indeed deliver an impact to the industry. It remains to be seen however if they could compete with Google's market and mind share, and its already proven search technology and features. With the impending war it will be the users who will reap the most benefits, as we have already seen in the Web Mail wars. I only hope Microsoft doesn't do something unfair again.

Watching Steve Job's WWDC Keynote

I am currently watching a recorded Web Cast of Steve Job's WWDC keynote, where he previewed OS X's next version, 10.4, code-named Tiger. Damn it 's great... Some of features mentioned that i really like is Tiger's new Search Technologies. I was right when i predicted (undocumented, unfortunately) that they will just apply the iTunes paradigm to OS X's overall file system to attain the goal of a search-driver System. Made me wonder why MS is taking such a long time to deliver similar technology. Tiger is expected to be released First half of 2005, while Longhorn, if released on time will come on 2006.

Sigh. I really want an Apple.

(The audio portion of the stream stopped towards the end when Steve Jobs was doing a demo of ICHAT AV multi-conferencing. Decided to do a quick blog about the keynote)

Oh oh. Intel is in Trouble.

Intel is prepping up Prescott to become a dual-core processor.Great strategy move or an obligatory backup plan? A very good article by John "Hannibal" Stokes of Arstechnica explains the reasoning behind Intel's recent moves.

So let's say that you're Intel, and you've got this microprocessor architecture that's the backbone of your central product line, with millions invested into developing it and improving it. And let's say that the fundamental premise on which that microarchitecture was built craps out a few years too soon. What do you do? In Prescott's case, it looks like the answer is to try your best to adapt the old design to a new set of circumstances, rather than throwing it out the window. This means cranking way back on the clock speed increases, and taking advantage of Moore's Curves* by adding functionality to the die instead. This added functionality comes in the form of a whole other core, rather than a few new execution units and some cache.

Head on to Ars and read the article

A Piece on the Webmail Wars

Hotmail will not be left behind. This is according to Microsoft spokeswoman Kathleen Callaghan, as reported in the Washington Post.

Microsoft spokeswoman Kathleen Callaghan said she had not heard of any free accounts getting more storage. (this is a response to reports that some hotmail free account members have indeed seen their storage increase from 2mb to 25 mb)

But she did confirm that the company has plans in the works to beef up Hotmail: "Part of that will ensure that storage won't be an issue," she said. And a Microsoft vice president, Yusuf Mehdi, said last week that users will see a ton of innovation from Hotmail and Microsoft's other communication services over the next year.

(Bold comments in parentheses are mine).
Google is really shaking up the webmail landscape, and this is all good for the consumers. If it is not already obvious in this blog, I am strongly betting my money on Gmail, since it is the most revolutionary webmail among the three. Even with Yahoo's recent improvement, Gmail still offers the best feature set. The only problem is it's limited availability. If hotmail is serious about not giving up a big chunk of its webmail market share, they should deliver a better hotmail before Gmail opens to the public. By better I mean three things, in order of importance:

  • faster response,
  • new features that will match or top that of gmail's,
  • and larger storage.

Speed is one of the two key factors why Gmail is able to deliver the new paradigm that it promises. Google's legendary data searching capability is of course the other piece of the puzzle. Why would then one choose searching over sorting when the search is not speedily done?

Features: Gmail is the first webmail to use a sorting paradigm that goes beyond your ordinary hierarchical file-folder metaphor. This is a huge improvement in organization and management of email, because it removes the limitations of the file-folder system, where a file (email) can only exist in one folder. In fact I can discuss Gmail's great feature set in a whole article (which I'm dong next), but unfortunately it is not as good as actually experiencing it yourself. Once a user experiences Gmail's features, he/she may find it difficult to go back to his/her old webmail.

Storage: The reason why i put this last is because in reality Google's 1GB is overkill at this moment, that Yahoo and hotmail (should they choose to match Yahoo)could get away even with a tenth of Gmail's offering. As all of them have said, they are just putting the storage issue out of the table. This is of course a usability point o view, the marketing effect of a huge email storage is another issue, as we have just saw with Gmail.

To conclude; maybe just like the rest of Gmail's early adopters, i will honestly say that the 1GB storage is what made me want a gmail. The feature set is the reason why I am sticking

Why I Would Want to Root for Firefox Again

I have not rooted for firefox for a long time now, or at least not as aggressively as I could have been. I have taken a "if you don't want it, then don't get it" stand in some issues, like in the browser war, specially in this browser war. Maybe this is because I am starting to be more mature and therefore realizes now that not everyone can think or thinks the same way that I do. This has changed however.

Last night i just finished reading Arstechnica's interview of Scott Collins from Mozilla.org. Good piece. It shed some light on some aspects of the Netscape/Mozilla, the organization's ups and downs and the mistakes and achievements of the organization. Scott's last statement made an impact on me though.

It took a lot of things all happening together to make the web work and one key piece of that was the Netscape browser, and that became part of the consciousness of the world. That's the thing I learned to lust after as a programmer. It's not my ability to solve one problem, to plow this field, but the ability to build a plow that every farmer uses. The ability to make something that touches not ten people, not a hundred people, not a thousand people but a hundred million people. I want Mozilla to be there again. IE is a browser with no soul. I want it to be Mozilla because I think that people who care deserve a browser with a soul.

I work in part time in an Internet Cafe where I have at my disposal to make Firefox the default browser, but I don't. As I have said, I give our users the choice to use their favorite browser, and I have always thought that it is the right thing to do. In fact, I still do. The difference now is that I saw and agreed with what Scott said about IE being a browser with no soul. You can disagree, and that is OK with me. In fact Google Zeitgeist tells me that a lot will. But I digress. I will root for mozilla. And help them to take back the web.

Get Firefox

Firefox 0.9 is here

Get Firefox

Firefox 0.9 is finally here. Great improvements:

  • The import function makes your transition both from IE or an older version of Firefox/Phoenix a lot smoother and automated.
  • New default theme. Nice. Slick. Clean. Original. Now I can really make this as my default theme. Of course you can always chose your own. I still haven't checked if the themers have updated their themes to make it 0.9 compatible, just check them out here
  • Improvements in Tools and Options organization. Better and easier to use than ever. Frequently accessed Themes and Extensions options are now readily available in the Tools dropdown menu.
  • 0.9 Release notes here

Echoing the call from all the other Firefox users: use Firefox! Give it a try for a week, if you are really unsure about it.

Google's Next Step?

I was pondering over the possibility of Google eventually delivering an instant messenging client. Watching the company with its recent strategic moves and acquisitions, I can say that the IM is a logical next step. Of course I could be wrong. But in the case that I am right, I hope they chose to use an open protocol, or if they do choose to create their own, that they open it. AIM's Oscar protocol could be a good bet, and should Google choose to use it, then the (almost) instant interoperability with AIM and iChat could be a big plus for everyone.

Too bad Gaim is already taken. :-p

Yahoo mimics a Gmail Feature

I first read the news from the Gmail Users community in orkut, and it was only now that I noticed: Yahoo has indeed introduced a new feature in Mail: Address Autocomplete. From YahooMail:
You start. We finish.

  • Begin typing an email address.
  • AutoComplete lists matching addresses from your Yahoo! Address Book.
  • You click on the exact address you want.
  • That's it - dozens of keystrokes replaced with just one click.

Click Download Now to begin using the AutoComplete feature on this PC - but first, close any additional Internet Explorer windows you have open

Autocomplete is one of the nifty features of Gmail, and now it seems Yahoo is trying to match the feature. While both rely on your address book to look for auto-complete matches, there are differences in the implementation. In Gmail, the feature is default for all users, and is not dependent on the computer that you are working on. Yahoo however requires each user to enable the feature in each computer she uses if she wants to use it. Although installation of the features is quick and pretty straightforward (i think the trick is just a cookie), the extra steps are not good for the user. Gmail's autocomplete is also smarter. It looks for matches both in the email and name field of the address book, and provides a better feedback of the match. Parity of feature is the minimum that Yahoo should do, if it doesn't want to lose a big chunk of its user base to Gmail. And though they did make the right step here, Gmail is still ahead.

Things I want to do with this Blog

  • I want to make a user review of gmail, to discuss its current state and the features that I think should be added and or polished
  • I want to discuss FOAF, a promising RDF standard that augments our social presence in the web. It aims to unify our identity on the net. Kinda like to that thing that Passport aimed to do, sans Big Brother.
  • Maybe I'll take some quiet moments to mull over this blog, to refine its purpose and objective. I am having trouble focusing on stuff.
  • As always the case in things that we do, over all, make this a lot better. Maybe I have find more information inflow. Repeat after me: Internet is not everything.

Okay. Maybe that's all for now.

Apple's Newest Gadget

Hmmm. It's been quite a long time since Apple pulled a trick up from its sleeves. And it almost always never fails. Introducing Apple's Newest weapon:
Let's see.

  • a 802.11g repeater
  • a NAT router
  • a network usb printer server
  • a wifi link between your iTunes and your Stereo.


Toxic Dust from Your Computer

Fresh from a report by Hannibal of Arstechnica:
According to several environmental groups, "toxic dust" that are emitted by processors and monitors contain chemicals that may be linked to reproductive and neuroligal problems. The chemical identified are commonly used in electronic equipments as flame retardants

Researchers collected samples of dust from dozens of computers in eight states, including university computer labs in New York, Michigan and Texas, legislative offices in California, and an interactive computer display at a children's museum in Maine. They tested for three types of brominated flame retardants suspected to be hazardous.

One important part in the article pointed in Arstechnica:

Scientists have not directly correlated exposure to PBDEs with specific diseases or developmental impairment, although researchers are studying possible links between brominated flame retardants and autism.

Hannibal's comment about the possible link between this "toxic dust" and autism is even more interesting:

...This statement really jumped out at me, because it might make for a good explanation of the otherwise mysterious and anamolously high rate of autism in... you guessed it, Silicon Valley. Even if it's not the cause, it could very well be a contributing factor.

The news article is here
The Arstechnica report
The article about autism in Silcon Valley

Censorship in DVD's - Utah style.

In this New York Times article David Pogue discusses how a new technology in DVD player works: ClearPlay.

DVD players supporting this technology will allow you to filter some contents in DVD's - foul language, sex and violence and more. You do this thru filters made for specific movies, created by human editors. 100 filters are built-in, 500 more can be downloaded (for a fee) from ClearPlay's website. Nice attempt to sanitize DVD movies, but not one without shortcomings. The weakness of ClearPlay is not the technology, but on the fact that what your ClearPlay - enabled DVD player will skip is not really your choice, but those of who made the movie filters - the human editors. Your take on whether their taste of what's to be skipped and what should be shown maybe one of the biggest factor you'd have to consider if DVD players enabled with this technology are for you.

My two cents? Of course, I have not tested any player (heck, I don't get to test stuff) but based on what the article says, ClearPlay tries to make movies suitable to audiences beyond to what it was originally made for. Hmmm. questionable. Violence and or Sexual content may not just be reflected on some specific scenes but on the overall theme of the movie as well-can you really sanitize some movies without ruining the original form of it? This compromise between integrity of the movie as an original work of its creators and thoroughness and accuracy of the filters is something that is really hard to do.

Of course, i haven't mentioned the Movimakers complaining about ClearPlay. But the issue is of more important to the consumers who would eventually be using the technology. To quote a text from Mr Fred "zAmboni" Locklear of Ars Technica:

One can see why Hollywood studios are complaining about the ClearPlay technology. The ClearPlay editors are the ones who override the writers and directors visions to decide on what are filtered, and do a ham-handed job about it. But the studios' arguments fall apart because the consumer consciously chose to purchase a ClearPlay enabled DVD player and chose to enable the filters. The most valid complaints may come from the purchasers of ClearPlay DVD players after sensitive eyes see violent images they thought would be filtered out.

I agree.

Link courtesy of Ars Technica

Who in the world is David Jeske

I am still on with my google groups 2 beta testing and lately i found out it does have its own litle rewards. Besides the gain of knowledge and skill on the workings of the new service, that is.

If you are the owner of a google group, you can promote your groups thru your website using the google groups 2-provided promotion boxes, just like the ones provided by YahooGroups.

I was testing it just minutes before this post and i entered my email in the email address field. Then i got the message that says:
Almost there!

In order to confirm your request to join [our group name], a confirmation message has been sent to the following address: jeske@chat.net

Please check your mailbox for this message. You must click on the link in the email message to confirm your subscription. Until then you can...

Register or Sign-in
Check out the group archives (only if public!)

bolding mine. Now who is jeske?.It didn't take long (0.24 seconds) after googling before i saw Mr. Jeske's page and his resume. Aha! what would a previous Yahoo Groups manager's email be doing at google groups' report page? Im not really sure, but I see two possible scenarios here, equally interesting i guess:

  • David Jeske still works for yahoo and somehow he managed to request the google groups' developers to provide him feedback about the people that subscribes to a google group, or,
  • he is working at google.

until he returns my email inquiries, the question still holds: Who in the world is David Jeske?

Sounds uglier, Tastes Better: Orkut

The perks of being an orkut early invitee: You get to be the owner of communities that you like! But at the moment, it's down. So ill do my community-building spree later. Good thing, I'm forced to do the first things first.

Testing the waters with GG2

For those who just came out of their caves, Google, our favorite search company started testing revitalized google groups 2 (gg2) weeks ago. And up to today i have been watching and testing the service. In many aspects it is still pretty in its beta stage, and therefore it doesn't make a lot of sense to have a review of the service at this time. Getting a first hand experience of the service would probably serve best those who are curious about the service.

As in the case for most of us, our Yahoo Groups pretty much does everything for our group collaboration needs. I actually see Yahoo's excellent and exhaustive features as the best in the field which google engineers should aim to leapfrog. Parity cannot be enough, if google wants to take a big slice of the cake. The sevice from Google however, should not be underestimated, for it has its own arsenal of features, albeit still in its young stages. The power of the google search, a very good implementation of threaded messages and Atom Feeds for messages summaries, are only a few of these features.

So you have a yahoo groups account, but want to test this new Google groups, What can you do? I would really go against migrating your whole group at this point. It's just too early. What you can do as a starter, is create your group under Google Groups 2 now. I see two reasons for this "beta migration": 1)to reserve your group's name as early as now and 2)to be able to duplicate future posts to your current Yahoo group. The first is obvious, so i'll just dwell on the 2nd reason.

What i mean with the second reason is like this: if you start your google groups now, you can forward all future message posts done in your yahoo groups TO your NEW google group's account. (Take note:FUTURE messages only. so if you start early, the more messages you will have later). This way you will have a Google groups archive of your Yahoo Groups message posts. Should you chose to migrate later, you'd already have a message archive to start, minimizing the barrier to and inconvenience of migration. Normally you can just set your group preferences in Yahoo Group to forward emails to your new Google group email, but for some reasons, Yahoo prevents you from doing this. So you have to find an email forwarding service that will serve as a midle man between your Yahoo and Google group. I tried despammed and bigfoot. I had some problems with despammed because it breaks the message threading feature of GG2, the glitch actually being the effect of the "[DESPAMMED]" string appended by the service to the subject of the messages. Im afraid that spam is the caveat of the bigfoot service, but i have yet to see one.... Lastly, you can always set your own mail server do the forwarding work. After you've done all that, your google groups account will now begin archiving your yahoo groups messages.

Amazon's A9 Search

I know this is late. but Amazon's A9 seach does add a fresh idea to searching. Search history is cool...

Apple patents transparent windows.

Apple is trying to patent transparent windows. OS news has an editiorial piece here.
hmmm. google just launched google groups 2. this i found out yesterday. so far im having a hard time testing the features... (i think it's hard to be the sole member of the group). and the blogger just made a major makeover. and it's now more pleasing to the eyes. i'm starting to see how serious the google guys are in taking over the world. of information organizing. hah.

Graphical Composition in Avalon by Ian Griffiths -- Longhorn introduces significant new graphics technology, codenamed "Avalon." Avalon renders an application's visual elements onto the screen using a much more sophisticated approach than Windows has previously used. In this article, Ian Griffiths show how this new graphical composition model solves various limitations of Win32, what new user interface design techniques this enables, and what it means to developers.

pardon my perhaps naive and young exposure on discourse and intellectual debates on the internet, for the discussion that follows this article certainly raises the bar of how i view discussions in general (and i thought that slashdot was good way back). to ian griffith, i have developed a great respect for your professionalism and control, for being open minded. the same goes to mweiher.
im here at physci doing my thesis blah blah blah....
wahhh. i think each day that i read about gmail, my craving for it increases tenfold. dang.. i still couldn't let it pass that i almost had a gmail account... sigh. actually all these ramblings are just petty attempts of begging for a gmail account.. hey google people... wohhooo. i am a good tech evangelist, and although i alone may not make a big difference, i can certainly make one. :-p. gmail account please!!!
creativecommons.org: a glimpse on the future of copyright. be prepared. before you got run over.