Friday, May 30, 2008

flying kancil

yesterday as I was driving home from my apartment, i was approaching a sharp turn on the road in bandar utama. It was a four lane road with a divider with palm trees in the centre. I slowed down as this was a dangerous corner. There's been a few accidents on this road already.

About 20 metres in front of me, I saw the most amazing thing. A red Kancil from the opposite lane hit the divider, flew in the air onto my lane. As it was in mid air, it turn over almost 180 degrees and landed on its side and the forward motion pushed it back upright on all four wheels. I immediately brakes as there was also a lorry in front of me. Good thing the lorry didn't run into the kancil and it didn't fall on anyone!

No one else stopped to help. I got down and ran up to help. The driver was a Chinese guy who looked daze and bleeding from his forearm. His car was upright so luckily he could exit the car easily. Other than a smashed side window and broken side mirror his car looked ok. I offered to take him to the hospital but he wanted to go home. I asked if there was anyone at home, he said no one. I replied since no one is at home its best I take him to the hospital first. While we were talking another Chinese guy walks up with a walker talkie. I think it was less than 15 minutes after the accident. The guy offered his card and wanted to tow the car.

By then the bleeding guy was in the backseat of my car already. I gave him some tissues to stop the bleeding plus I didn't want him bleeding all over my car. The tow truck operator didn't want to let us leave until we gave him the car keys. He kept saying you can trust me. I looked at him and he looked like the typical ah beng who sells DVDs. The victim was in a shocked and finally agreed.

I drove the guy to the Damansara Specialist hospital. On the way there he told me he lost control of the car and the next thing he knew, he was on the other side of the road. I told he was lucky to be alive. He added he was on leave and was on the way back from the bank. Poor guy.

I drove him into the emergency room. Just to make sure he was ok, I parked and when in to see him. The nurses was trying to explain to him he can only use his insurance card if he was admitted. If it was outpatient treatment he had to pay first and claim later. I told him just see the doctor and worry about the money later.

As I was leaving, the ah beng tow truck operator came looking for him. I left them together.

I guest I'm lucky to be alive too. If was driving any faster, the kancil would have landed on my car and killed me. It wasn't the first accident I sawon that road. I've seen over 20 at the same corner. I think I have to write to MBPJ and ask them to install a speed bump. People tend to drive really fast on it.

I told the story to my colleagues and the first thing they asked me was where are the pictures. Damn it, I actually wanted to take some but considering the gravity of the situation, I didn't have time.

Later in the evening the victim SMS me thanking me. I guessed he lived to tell his tale.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Malaysian Artises for Unity

check this out, a bunch of Malaysian artist got together to come out with a free song about national unity. It's quite catchy too!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008


I have a feeling my private compartmentalized life is colliding. It used to be my anonymous identity on the Internet was secure. I now find that soon people from other compartments in my life is encroaching into other areas.

I organize my life into a few separate compartments. I'm a privacy freak, I separate my life into work, family, personal friends, and my persona on the Internet.

A few days ago, someone at work asked me about my flickr account. I never told anyone about it before. I'm thinking, if they know my facebook and flickr account, they probably read this blog then.

My worlds are colliding, its harder to secure information about my life. The security leaks are my own faults. Maybe subconsiously i want it all to merge.

It used to be many years ago, I discovered emails back in the mid 90's. Then I discovered IRC. It opened a whole new world to me. My whole social life was on the Internet. The keyboard was an extension of my brain. I began to interact with the world through it. i had virtual friends; I fell in love with someone I never met on the Internet; I bought things through Internet sites. For many years, I lived in the matrix. I was physically in front of a monitor and my hands were glued to a keyboard. It was safe interaction.

when I started working, it was a strange world for me. I had to physically interact with people. By then I had forgotten or never really learned a lot of social skills I should have known. It was hard, people thought I was aloof as I didn't want to talk. The truth was, I was afraid. I was afraid of interacting with someone, with anyone in the real world. In the cyberworld, I was just a nickname and an idea. They only saw the words I typed. There was no body language; no smell; no beauty to behold. Just words. My world was safe in my cocoon.

Now things have changed. I'm learning to to interact physically with the world. Its not perfect but I'm trying. If i don't talk to you it doesn't mean I don't like you (actually, it could) it just means I don't know what to say to you.

So I say it here, hello, nice to meet you. What's your name?

Monday, May 26, 2008

Playing with the Iphone

Haven't written much lately, that's because I've been busy with a few things.

I've been learning how to meddle with my Iphone a lot. Here are some of the things I've accomplished so far:

1. Putting ringtones into the Iphone. This wasn't too hard. In the original unlocked Iphone, you could only buy ringtones online. I finally learned how to create my own ringtones. I also learned how to use Adobe Soundbooth CS3 a little. Not easy I must say. I wonder if I have the tutorial stashed away somewhere for Soundbooth. Anyway, now I got different ringtones for different people. For my office, I have the Mission Impossible and Macgyver TV theme. I think it's most fitting. Every time I get a call from the office, I have to do some Macgverism (yeah, there is actually such a word!).

2. Installing NES and Super NES into the Iphone. This was the hardest part. I had to first learn how to FTP into my Iphone. It wasn't easy, I had to download a few FTP programs to get it right. Basically, the Iphone first needs SSH connection. I downloaded it from the installer. Then I had to download a FTP program to connect me to the Iphone. My old WS_FTP didn't have SSH FTP connection. I settled for SmartFTP which is going to expire in 30 days. Better find a new one.

Anyway, now I got some old arcade games in the Iphone. I have Punisher, Golden Axe, Street Fighter 2, etc. The interface is quite hard because the buttons aren't real buttons you can press. I find games that are not too intense easier to play. Beat em' up games are harder as I have to constantly press some buttons and the Iphone gets really warm too. I can't save any games on this. Not sure why when it's suppose to work.

3. Transferring movies to the Iphone. I've been transferring some of the DVD's I haven't watched yet to the Iphone. I have to encode it into mpeg4 or H264. I think H264 is a better compression, I use Handshake, it's a freeware and it's quite easy to use. The only down part is it takes really long to encode one DVD. I think it takes about the whole duration of the movie, if the movie was one hour, the encoding will take about an hour too. So what I do is I usually leave the PC on over night and encode a few DVD's.

I only watch action movies now on the Iphone. I can't watch a movie all at one go on it. The only time I watch a movie is when I'm waiting for someone or in my bed just before I sleep. I need plot lines that are easy to follow and pick up after constant stop and plays.I think I'll go find some TV series and try downloading it into them. I wonder if I can find Heroes season 3. I've been meaning to catch up on 24 season 5 too. I'll see if I can borrow the DVD from anyone, I don't want to be paying too much for the box set.

My apartment renovation is slower than I expected. There's a lot of things that have to happen in a sequence so if one thing takes up too much time, it affects the others. Really irritating.

I got to get things done for the wedding too! Really behind in time.

Monday, May 19, 2008

good day

today has been an extremely good day so far. How do I know its a good day? Well its a "I-found-something-I-lost-day". Occasionally I loose things which is usually misplaced. Initially I will give it up for good but later it will turn up on its own. Today was the day things started turning up.

I woke up this morning and decided to clean my toilet bowl. I took the jet spray and sprayed high pressure water into it to give it a good flush. After a minute of that, I saw something drop down from the other end of the toilet bowl bottom. I took a closer look and I'd was part of my electric shaver that I thought had gone into the sewers. A month ago, I dropped my electric shaver into the toilet bowl while shaving. I fished it out and washed it. After using the toilet a few times then only did I realize that part of the shaving blade fell of into the toilet bowl. I gave it up for good... That is until it reappeared today.

Normally I would be too grossed out to fish anything out of a toilet bowl but this is my own personal toilet bowl and I wash it quite often. I reason since only my own sewage goes into it, its not too gross. I washed the blade and fitted it back into the electric shaver and now it works again! Yes! Okay, so I shave with a shaver that's been in the toilet bowl, no big deal to me. This shaver has sentimental value to me. I bought it when I was a student in the US. So that makes this shaver 10 years old. I'm surprised it still works so well. That's why Panasonic is one of my favourite brands.

Another thing I found after cleaning up my sofa was my Iphone headset. I thought I had lost it at work. Turns out it was hidden under the cushion on the sofa. Damn it, I already bought a replacement. I think I'll leave one by my bed and listen to music while I surf the internet on my iPhone which by the way, I'm doing right now.

My typing skills has vastly improved since I started blogging with it. It just takes practice.

A colleague came over today. He wanted to convert DVD's into AVI files that AVID could read. Normally for that type of workflow I just rename the VOB file as .mpg and import it into premiere pro. His old version of AVID could only import certain file formats. No mp4 or divx or xvid. His laptop couldn't support CS3 so in the end we had to move to plan B.

I loan him my video camera and thought him how to record the DVD straight to the camera. It's not the efficient way to work but at least it gets the job done. Hope it works out for him.

Since its Wesak Day I figure that would be my good karma deed for today. I didn't go I the temple today, I when yesterday. I profess Buddhism ast religion but I don't really believe all the rituals. To me its just symbolic. I figure maybe I'll do more good by staying home and staying out of the traffic chaos at the temple. Better to cultivate good karma through my deeds than burning josstick.

Still a few more hours before the day ends, keeping my fingers crossed it all ends well today!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

formatting the PC

I'm really nervous right now. I'm reinstalling winxp on my PC. right now I'm formatting the second hard disk using the Vista OS. I bought the original copy of vista business edition. I don't use it much except for gaming and surfing.

All the real work is done on the XP OS. Lately I think I screwed up the XP OS, the AVID I installed won't run, there's a pop up browser virus plus a slew of a lot of other tiny bugs that bothers me. I finally decided to burn everything down and start again. I already bought a Western Digital My Book 500GB external hard disk. Big Enough to back up everything so far. I copied the whole hard disk worth of 350GB into it.

Now I'm checking the HD that I'm going to install XP on for errors. No point checking for fragmentation since it'll be empty before anything goes in. Good thing I found the A drive diskette with the motherboard drivers. I haven't used the A drive in years and the diskette was literally collecting dust under the PC.

All this waiting is making me nervous. My biggest fear is formatting the wrong partition and installing it on the HD with Vista instead. Scary!

my hands are shaking a little just thinking about it.

Maybe watching a DVD while I wait would help.

Friday, May 16, 2008

more videos of Marie Digby in One Utama

Someone e-mailed me through my youtube account requesting for more videos of Marie Digby in One Utama. I don't have much plus they're not very good videos but I've uploaded them anyway.

I was going to download her music but in the end I decided to buy a second hand album from someone in the office.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Marie Digby in One Utama

I got some video of Marie Digby performing live in One Utama. I didn't get any good still photos as the crowd was huge and I couldn't get close enough.

I didn't bring my video camera either. All I had was my compact camera which I captured the video above. Surprisingly, it captured the video and audio quite well... minus the shaky hands.

The rest of the still photos are in my flickr account.

waiting for Marie Digby

I'm in one utama now. Originally I came here to see marie digby perform her free concert here at 8pm. After standing around waiting I got hungry and now I'm at a ramen shop waiting for my noodles. Hopefully the music would be loud enough for me to hear as I eat my noodles.

I was going to see her when she came to my office yesterday but I didn't wake up early enough. There's a really young crowd out there waiting for her which makes me feel out of place.

Ok, noodles are here, time to eat! I love the free wifi in one utama!

Don't wave at me, it makes me nervous

In my office, they just moved the Fly.FM radio station into their brand new studios near my editing studios. So I have to walk by their 'fish bowl' DJ console everytime I walk to the editing decks. The Hot.FM fish bowl is right at the front lobby so they get the most stares. The Fly.FM fish bowl is hidden so most of the people who walk by it are staff.

The DJ's sit in a room with glass walls and everyone can see them, so I call it the fish bowl. Normally, when I come in the morning I can see the DJ's at work or see them at breakfast at the cafeteria.

Yesterday, as I walked by, I realized Phat Fabes was waving a hello at me. I sheepishly waved a hello back at him since we can't hear each other (his room is sound proof). It makes me wonder, how the heck does he know who I am? I wonder if he was waving instead to someone behind me?

I spoke to him once on the phone but I've never introduced myself in real life before. It freaks me out sometimes when people know who I am but I don't know who they are.

I'm one of the only 3 chinese in my department so it makes it easy for people to remember my name. I walk by the office corridors and people I've only spoken too a few times know my name and they would say hi. I hardly remember their names so I just say hi back. Once, a guy came up to me in the office and said my name and proceeded to give me his business card. I replied, "you know me?". He said, now he does and proceeded to tell me if I ever needed carpets, I can call him. Hrmm...

In my university, I used to stay in a coed dorm. There was this cute Hmong girl who lived on my floor. We never spoke before but we walk by each other in the same corridors. One day, I finally cut my shoulder length hair and as I was walking back to my room, she walked pass me. She looked at me and said "you cut your hair!". I laughed and said "yes, it was about time". Strange what people notice about you. I never really did have the courage to talk to her. When I was going to cut my hair, the student hairstylist kept asking me if I was really sure I wanted to cut my hair short. She even offered to save all the cut hair in a shoebox for me. That was kind of gross. I declined.

Tomorrow I'm going to walk by the Fly FM fish bowl and see if the DJ's do wave back again.

An Inconvenient Truth

the more I think about the disaster in Myanmar and the earthquake in China, the more I think about Al Gore's documentary, "The Inconvenient Truth".

It's a really scary movie to watch, the scariest part is you know deep down Gore is telling the truth. We're slowly killing our self by polluting the environment. While earthquakes have nothing to do with global warming, cyclones do. The tornadoes and cyclones/typhoons are just going to get worst. Droughts would be longer. We'll have less rainfall in large crop growing areas. The worldwide food crisis is going to get worst.

Many people are going to starve to death. Fuel prices would continue to rise and soon Malaysia will be a net importer of petroleum. If you think inflation is high now, 10 years from now it would be so high most Malaysians would not be able to afford to drive anymore. We won't have to worry about building the second Penang Bridge as traffic would be less. The government should instead invest more in public transport.

I wish the Malaysian government invested more in researching alternative energy sources. Ethanol has been proven to be bad for the environment. The crops we are growing is now being used as fuel instead of feeding people. We must learn how to harness our hydro and solar power. There must a huge social restructuring of how we use energy. The shift from petroleum, gas and coal must take place now before it is too late.

We can make a change for the better, we just have to get started. If only everyone knew the urgency of the situation.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Disasters in Myanmar and China

Recently there has been two major disasters. Cyclone Nargis that ravaged Myanmar and the devastating earthquake in China. Current estimates for the death toll in China stands at least 10,000 victims.

I think China has a good track record in responding to natural disasters, since the dynastic times, the emperors knew that they had to response to disasters fast. Slow response could mean a revolt on their hand.

The Myanmar junta however are still slow to respond to aid offers from other countries.

When you sit back and look at the situation, taking into account the food crisis that the world is suffering from and the huge population of the earth, I start to wonder what does it all mean?

I think the world is over populated. We don't manage our population growth very well as we are growing faster than the supply of our food. The environment is in a terrible state, resulting in droughts.

The Burmese that survived the tragedy now have to worry about their food supply. The rice crops are gone. The farmers who tended the fields are gone. Who would feed the rest of the nation?

The Chinese have huge flooding and earthquakes almost every year. Yet, their economy trives. It goes to show how large their population is. The Chinese are even now going overseas to look for land to grow food to send back home. This is nothing new, they have been doing the same for minerals for their growing economy.

Could this be the sign of a new colonial Chinese government? The Chinese government are already in all the hotspots of the world exploring for oil (so is Petronas).

The world is changing.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Hindraf talk at School of Oriental and African Studies, London

IMG_4551, originally uploaded by luxen.

I saw this poster while waiting to do an interview at School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) in the University of London.

The university is full of activies. They have students in the front of the university gathering support for someone who was detained.

I wonder what they think of Hindraf in Malaysia... and who is Dr. Graham K. Brown?

Shadows of London

Some interesting silhouettes around London, most of it from Westminster Bridge looking at the Big Ben.


The Eye of London

I love the clouds!

Me taking a cab ride.


I like this Angel, it looks as if she is riding towards you. More like a valkrie.

The people of London

Okay, just some pictures from London. I took some random photos of people walking by. There are a lot of good looking ladies.


Check out the lady in shades, she looked like Paris Hilton. I saw her crossing the road.


Debenham, Chui Yan's favourite store.

It was chilly at 10C but this Londoners seem to get by with less clothes than me.

A lot of Asians in London.

Nice coat lady!




Check out the lady taking a photo of the display at the Banana Republic store.






Londoners are quite fashionable!

Iphone summary

After a few weeks of using my Iphone, here's my conclusion:

Iphone is a lousy phone but a good multimedia device. It's best asset is its high resolution screen and Safari browser.

The Iphone is missing a lot of features that basic phones in Malaysia comes with like bluetooth connection with other phones to send files; MMS and a few others.

I also have a bug in this phone where I have to keep re-dialling a phone number before it connects.

Anyway, overall I like it. I'm not a heavy phone user. My EDGE data bill for Maxis has gone through the roof. I check my bill online and it's RM113 currently for this month, I downloaded 6.2MB of data on it so far. I think the large chunk of the bill came from playing around with google map.

I love the high resolution pictures, I like looking up high-res pictures and zooming in to see the details. I think the Iphone has sharper pictures than my desktop CRT monitor! I love watching DVD's on it.

Right now I got Cloverfield in it, not the best movie to watch as it's mostly shot handheld and I'm watching it on a handheld device. I could get motion sickness from just watching it.

It's my mother's birthday today, taking her out for dinner later. I wonder if I have time to download some new podcast. I've been watching a lot of the CNN podcast, quite fun.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Iphone short comings


My Iphone when I first got it.

One of the reasons I got the Iphone was because of the internet browsing experience. First of all, I have to say I've rarely used Safari before I got the Iphone. In fact, I was hardly ever an Apple user.

Now with the Iphone, I'm tempted to download Safari to my desktop. I like how Safari lets me browse webpages as full pages on the Iphone. That's fun. I get to check almost all the websites I normally visit.

The only hard part is blogging, the damn Iphone doesn't have a copy and paste command. When I want to add pictures to my blog, I normally copy and paste the html code from my flickr picture but since I don't have copy and paste, I would have to individually type it in the whole html code. I haven't tried it yet but the codes are damn long and I don't want to try.

There's quite a lot of short falls for this Iphone that you expect in any other Malaysian phones:

1. No MMS. There are some additional programs you can download but it's not the same like how you have MMS messages on normal phones. Maybe MMS traffic isn't such a big thing in the US but over here, MMS is catching up. I can't receive or send MMS now unless I install additional programs.

2. Cannot send and receive contacts. My old Samsung phone could only receive contacts from Samsung brand phones, not Nokia. So this one didn't really bother me. I have to manually type it out in a SMS if I want to send someone's contact.

3. No video recording. Video recording is only available with additional downloads. That's a bummer. It already has a nice camera, why didn't they build in a video recorder?

4. Phone numbers are displayed wierd. When I save phone numbers, normally I would type starting with 012 or 013, etc and save it under my contact's name. However, when a contact calls me, it doesn't display their name even though their number is saved. The reason is because all phone numbers are displayed starting with +6012 or +603 etc. It's quite irritating so now I have to re-type all my contact's number.

5. First call out doesn't work. This is a wierd problem, if I call someone the first time, the phone doesn't connect. Only on the second or third attempt it works. For example, if I want to call my house, I would search it up in the contacts and press the phone number and it'll start dialing. I hear the engage tone and it says call failed. I press the call again and then only I hear the dialing tone.

6. Typing on the keypad is really slow. I thing I getter speed typing on a numerical phone keypad. Because it's a touch screen phone, I don't get to feel the numbers like a normal keypad. If you type fast, sometimes you end up pressing the wrong keys. Granted, the spell check works pretty good on the Iphone, sometimes when I type in Malay it can be really irritating.

7. Cannot download ringtones. This one doesn't bother me too much. I just started learning how to create ringtones from my list of MP3's for my samsung phone. However, I can't do that for this Iphone. I suppose there must be some way to create your own ringtone. I know it recognizes only mp4 format ringtones. I just have to find a way to get it into the right folder.

8. Short battery life. If I use the Iphone for heavy internet browsing and watching movies, then the battery life is just 3 hours up time total. Not very long. I thought of buying another USB cable to charge the phone in the office but the cable is RM68, too expensive to get.

9. Can't edit Word, Excel and Powerpoint documents. Okay, granted this isn't a Windows Mobile 6 OS phone, but I would have loved to have the option to edit Microsoft Office documents. Right now, I can't even safe the documents to the phone. I have to browse and view it online only.

10. Surfing on EDGE is expensive. I have to be careful that I don't browse the internet when the EDGE is turned on, it can be really expensive. I only browse if its on WiFi. So far I have WiFi now in most of the places I use the Iphone... except when I'm driving and I shouldn't be browsing the internet when I'm driving!

There are other small things that bothers me about the phone. Other than the 10 points I listed, this is a pretty good phone for the GB169 price I paid. In Ringgit, it was only RM1054 so for that price range I think I got a pretty good phone. I think the biggest competition to this phone would be the HTC Touch phones. Their screen doesn't display movies as clear as the Iphone though.

I'm starting to convert all my DVD's to Iphone format now so I can watch it when I have nothing to do. I just finished watching No Country For Old Men, Flags of Our Father and Zodiac on the Iphone. 3 very long movies which I watched while I was waiting for Chui Yan in One Utama and at work ingesting tapes.

I think the next thing I'm going to get is my laptop after I settled my expenses for the apartment. I see the price of the notebook I want from Dell is getting cheaper. Good thing I didn't get it earlier!


The renovations in my apartment started today. They started hacking the toilet and the wet kitchen. It's a mess and communication is hard as I don't speak cantonese well. Anyway, I just deal with one person so its easier.

Good thing my brother and sister-in-law is helping. I still haven't picked the colour for the walls yet. I've photoshop some examples but they all look funky.

The timeline is that they're supposed to be done by the end of this month. Good, that means I get to start filling furniture in next month. Heck, maybe I can move in early to set up my PC and the internet.

Monday, May 05, 2008

been busy

the past few days I've just been to lazy do blog. Trying to keep the momentum is not easy. Sometimes its just easier to experience life without trying to keep a record of of it all the time you know?

The pass few days I've been preoccupied with digesting tapes at work. Ingesting tapes in the video editing world basicly means transfering from tape to the PC. It's a slow and boring process.

Other than. I've been fidling with my Iphone. I'm blogging with it right now I'm fact. Still not used to the keypad.

Ok time to take a nap. Really sleepy now.