Tuesday, 30 August 2005

100th Post

Hooray, I reached 100 posts, now another gazillion more to go. My good mate Dinghy seems to have a little bit of problem with a huge corporation here in good old Malaysia and as the clock ticks to the ever nearing independence day celebration (otherwise known as Merdeka Day) time is running by.

A quick read here would definitely shed some light on the topic.

Now I always wondered how companies who monopolize the market actually stay in the forefront of customer service. Maybe this only works with companies who have more than just a vision to be the very best. Not so much with some of the companies here in Malaysia I would say. I just found that out, but my poor mate had to learn it the hard way. My support goes with him and I am very sure that everyone else out there would like to provide that support as well because not only will it affect them but to everyone here.

To cut a long story short, my friend applied for a phone line and paid for the installation charges. But after the phone line was installed, the line was not working and after several months of complaining, the problem was not fixed at all and the company had the cheek to send my friend a bill for a service which he did not even get. The worst thing is that the company threatened to take legal action.

Since my knowledge of the Malaysian Law system pretty much sucks, I am guessing that legally, his predicament would be in favour of TM but from any consumer's point of view, it is just plain unfair. Would you expect anyone to pay for something that is definitely not what you expect it to be? Worst still, if a consumer is paying for a service but it was not satisfactory, isn't it the consumer's right not to pay for it? Anyone here did an extensive study of consumer rights?

In the light of being the sole provider for telephone lines, I really do hope that in the future that more competition could enter the market because competitiveness between companies brings out the best in them. If not, complacency slips in like a cancer growth, slowly chewing away at the life of not the company but of us consumers. So the real question is, how to we get a greedy company to stop and think about their customers. Plain and simple, responsibility. No more "tidak apa" attitude I would say.

Monday, 29 August 2005

The Cybercafe Strikes Back

A recent article at TheStar shows an extremely disgruntled parent ranting off about how cybercafes has influenced his son. The article begins with this,

"I HAVE a 19-year-old son who is studying in one of the colleges in Subang Jaya. Last year he became addicted to cyber games and stayed away from classes for weeks at a stretch.

We discovered there were cyber cafés situated just 10m and directly across the road from the main entrance of his college."

Lets face it, no matter how much a person can complain, there is nothing legally wrong with having cybercafes around because as much grief does it bring to this particular parent, it may be a good way for people who has no access to computers to be able to connect to the IT world.

"So we decided to look for him. It was 2am but the vicinity around the college was brightly lit and swarming with students.

They were smoking, drinking, eating, playing pool and courting. The whole place had the atmosphere of a carnival. "

I think it would be better for a place to be swarming with students having fun rather than an illegal assembly whereby they are thought weird cults and practices don't you think so? What is wrong with drinking, eating, playing pool and courting? Or would you rather have them doing all that at another place such as a sleazy club snorting coke and popping ecstasy pills? I think sometimes we should count our blessings, don't you think so?

"We went into one cyber café after another and saw that most of the seats were occupied. Everyone was engaged but not on the Internet. No, they were engrossed in fights against monsters and demons.

On one screen we saw these words: “There is only one commandment – Thou shall kill!”

I have to agree with a parent on this regarding violence in computer games. But the thing is that at that time the people I would assume that the writer saw were actually college kids or older teenagers to young adults. Under this age category, I am sure these patronts know how to think for themselves and that there are other sources of violence other than the usual shoot-them-up computer games, for example, television shows and movies. I would guess that the latter has more of an impact and it usually impacts the younger age group. That is why I support having ratings for video games such as the latest Hot Coffee mod for GTA: San Andreas which caused a huge controversy with parent groups. Right now, the game has been slapped with a M+ rating which stands for Mature if I am not wrong.

"From our enquiries, we found out that many of the students are from out of town, and even from overseas. Our hearts go out to the poor unsuspecting parents who could be giving their hard-earned money to some greedy and influential operators of the cyber cafés. "

Before you start firing at those students who so called unsuspecting parents are not wary of their "night" activities, have you seen then work at their projects at cybercafes? Have you seen them work as a group completing their projects at the cybercafes? Have you seen them do their research on the internet or even chat with their parents who are far away? Before we start criticizing those greedy cybercafe operators, why not complain about other types of operators preying on students such as home renters who charge exhorbitant rents to students especially when their location is so near the college.

Getting down to the problem, its all about choice, whether the individual wishes to spend his/her own time to release their stress or how one would like to spend their free time. If colleges do not have sufficient IT facilities which in most cases are quite true (its financially constraining to have a college to provide full IT support), aren't cybercafes providing that opportunity? Its not really sucking out their money, at RM2 per hour, its cheaper to spend 2 hours in a cybercafe rather than go watch at movie at the local cineplex where you could spend in excess of RM20 (RM10 for the ticket, RM1 for parking, RM9 for drinks and popcorn).

I do sympatize with you on your son who has been continuosly skipping lectures just to spend time playing computer games but then again is it really the fault of cybercafes or are you trying to avoid the responsibility of a proper upbringing of your son? As Asians I see the culture whereby everyone tries to avoid responsibility especially when it comes to family life and personal upbringing or anything that could actually bring shame to the family. By just blaming others or finding fault elsewhere, aren't you taking the easy step out?

If you do not agree with me, please go ahead and blame the following,
1) Casinos, for creating gamblers
2) Vehicles, for creating polution
3) Alcohol companies, for creating drunkards
4) Fast food companies, for increasing the obesity rates
5) PDAs, laptops and handphones, for creating the need to bring your work home with you rather than spend time with your family
6) The Internet, for allowing easy access to pornography
7) Television, for bringing violence and sexually explicit material into the lives of billions

But if you look at the items I have listed above, with proper choices, it does bring good to us.

1) Casinos, provide employment and stimulates the economy
2) Vehicles, transportation boom
3) Alcohol companies, huge refineries provide thousands of jobs
4) Fast food, a quick source of food at reasonable prices
5) PDAs, laptops and handphones, bring communication to a whole new meaning and saving valuable time
6) The Internet, a great source of knowledge as well as business advatages and personal items
7) Television, a great source of entertainment

Now no matter how much some of us can't live without at least one of the items above, lets just return to the topic of cybercafes.

Friday, 26 August 2005

Google everything!

Over the past couple of days, Google has been under attack from the usual Microsoft attackers. Could Google actually be the next Microsoft? Who knows? But what I know is that they have been branching into so many fields that even now they have their new Instant Messaging system called Google Talk.

Now I am really curious to try this out but I need some other friends who are willing to try it out with me. The only requirements needed is that you need a Gmail account and if you don't have one, please leave a comment requesting one as well as leave your email address so I could send an invitation to you. The software is still in its beta stages and it already looks cool to me, personally. Can't wait to download it and try it out.

Wednesday, 24 August 2005

Help Needed

Ok my luck hasn't been extremely good and I got a couple of things floating through my head while I try to figure out how to solve it. Well actually, my computer died on me and I am suspecting its the motherboard and my acoustic guitar's pick-up is gone as well. Problem right now is that my finances can't really keep up with all these extra costs so I figured out that I had to make some extra income in order to pay for those repairs. It all began about a couple of months ago when I was just thinking of making extra cash but now I know where that extra cash would be heading to.

So if you look along my sidebar, you would notice several Google links. Please help me by clicking on those links. I am sure those links will bring you to a very interesting website. It won't cost you anything at all. Only now can I hope to look forward to repairing my computer and acoustic guitar.

Remember, click, click, click!

Well so much for advertisements. Darn I am pretty hungry right now, but then again, when am I never hungry. I can't wait for dinner time, I haven't eaten anything the entire day. Naan sounds about right to me tonight though. I think I shall head over to Murni's tonight. Its been quite a while since I last been there. I guess the reason I am rather full was because I ate quite a lot last night with Dinghy, Quest and Lay Min at Mama's Kitchen. It was evident that we ordered too much food and everyone had trouble finishing their own share. Let just say we got owned pretty much.

Monday, 22 August 2005

Rest and relaxation

On Friday night the worst thing happened to me. My personal computer died on me. After countless of hours trying to fix it, it really was beyond repair. Or so I think. There are plenty of possibilities that could be the main cause. Alas I have no more ideas to try to solve it. Looks like I have to be PC-less for the next week or so. I might even have to change the entire motherboard, processor, power supply and memory. But I will wait until what the computer shop guy diagnose for me first. Hopefully he won't try and cheat me by saying that I need to change everything in my computer.

Sunday night was a bliss though, I brought Chuen out to Luna Bar. Its a nice restaurant located at the roof top of Menara Pan Global and the view from the restaurant was magnificent. The layout was so beautiful, modern and it offers a taste of what high-class really mean. Here are a couple of photos of the layout. I took it from Faces.com.my.

Since its located at the rooftop and Menara Pan Global is very near to KL Tower, the view from the restaurant was just breathtaking. The lights from the city radiate with such beauty and sets the mood to be extremely romantic. Its a perfect couples haven in my opinion.

The food on the other hand wasn't anything to brag about. I had a lamb kofta which didn't really taste that good in my opinion and it took like about an hour for the food to arrive. The menu was somewhat limited but hey, its a bar. The drinks menu has a lot more offering and the place seemed to be a haunt for expats working in the KL area looking for a place to chill, relax and have a drink. Prices weren't that cheap but its still cheaper than eating at Victoria Station and its about the same price as dining at Italianis in 1 Utama.

Now a new start to the week where I am PC-less. It looks like I have to revert back to my trusty old Dell laptop while I figure out which computer shop I will be sending my computer to. Its going to be quite a hassle as well as burn a hole in my pocket but I have to learn to overcome this and make the most of it. At least now I have more time to spend with my friends and my ministry.

Saturday night was the very first time I saw Liverpool perform for the new 2005/2006 season and it was utterly dissapointing. To have a multi million pound line-up, their performance was short of decent and truly enough I thought Sunderland deserved to win. It was totally horrendous. If things do not change anytime soon, I would expect Liverpool to finish around mid-table this season.

I learned that ants have great sense especially to heat. Remember those days when you were a kid and you were holding a magnifying glass. Remember those days when you try to burn the hell out of those ants? Well I just had enough with those ants that always run across my desk at work like some marathon runner. This time I took out my soldering irons and started chasing them around and my, were they really running away, panicking. After a decent 30secs, they were gone. I thought that would really scare them until they called reinforcements. This time there was no mercy. Even now, two dead ants sit at the bottom of my soldering iron pit, lying stil beside the solder balls. Well so much for ants being escape artists.

Friday, 19 August 2005

I've been tagged....

Ok since I have been tagged by melo-jo, it seems that I have a list to prepare and the answer is, voila!

The terms were to choose one of the following.

"10 heros in your life, 10 things you're grateful for, 10 things you hate, 10 veggies, 10 instruments you play, 10 dogs you've loved before, 10 weird things about yourself, names of your 10 fingers, 10 hopes, 10 past failures, 10 bad habits, 10 dirty secrets, 10 sins you've committed, 10 songs you like, 10 worst TV shows, 10 favourite bible characters, 10 baby names...."

So I decided on this.

10 Weird Things About Myself

1. My weight is a yoyo, it goes up and down almost on a yearly basis
2. I don't enjoy eating steak, give me lamb anytime!
3. I poked a guy in his arse with a mechanical pencil before.
4. I went to a police station at 2am in the morning with a topless guy before.
5. I enjoy watching cooking shows especially those by Jamie Oliver
6. I hate eating sardines
7. I can actually play the organ, well sort of.
8. I am too lazy to put on my contacts early in the morning
9. I got flappy ears
10. I hardly watch television

Now who shall I tag?

Lets see, Chuenie, Dinghy, Joshua, Grace and Lionel.

Thursday, 18 August 2005


I came across an article on the The Star's website stating about a family's experience with police breaking in to their homes. Well normally I would say good job to the policemen as they might have good notion and intentions to apprehend evil doers. But it wasn't so. Apparently the policemen broke in to their homes without a warrant and they were in plainclothes and did not arrive in a police marked vehicle. Of course that would be extremely suspicious to any respected citizen in any country but the men just identified themselves as police and did not show any form of identification.

"He said they are police officers and do not need a search warrant.

"They did not show any identification. They did not even come in a police car. How am I to know that they are real policemen?

Are policemen actually allowed to break into a home without a search warrant? If that were the case, then would any evidence found at the scene be permissible in court? But of course in this case, nothing was found but only a mental dent into the lives of that family was left.

Even so, the scariest bit for me was the reply from Ipoh OCPD Asst Comm Che Sab Hanafiah who said the following,

"They had shown their credentials to the house owner and when they were not allowed in, they have the right to break into the house to make a search even without a warrant."

I understand if it was for national security or the fight against terrorism but for suspecting the family to be involved in a betting syndicate? Was all of that really necessary? You decide for yourself.

Anyway, as the clock continue to tick away until we celebrate "Hari Merdeka" (Independance Day), I really wonder what have we learnt over the past 50 years. It is truly amazing to actually see how Malaysia has changed into a buzzing country with great food and heritage. Maybe I shouldn't let one isolated incident like this be the spoiler for a special day to come. Sometimes it takes just a single solitary incident for it to be blown out of proportion.

Monday, 15 August 2005


Hey its my mum's birthday tonight. Hope she likes the present me and Chuen bought for her. Sometimes its rather difficult to choose a present that she will like. Oh well, its too late to cast any doubts now anyway.

I managed to hop over to Lowyat Plaza over the weekend to purchase a spanking new 1Gb CF card for my spanking new X50v. Well, my eagerness ended spanking right back at me. After the purchase, I tried slotting in the card but due to my incredible ignorance to check which way was it supposed to fit in nicely, I ended up bending the connector pins. Its such an irony for me to actually screw up when trying to slot in a simple memory card especially since I am an electronics engineer working on designing electronic produtcs. Thank God I managed to figure out to slowly bend it back into position using my stylus. After a quick reboot everything was working fine. At least I learned something from soldering microsize capacitors, resistors and other components. Steady hands, steady hands!

I always look forward to playing futsal on Sundays and after my long absence (thanks to my knees). Yesterday was a great joy, the running and sweating, scoring a single goal and being a goalkeeper. Still the knee is not fully up to performance yet. Looks like I have to work harder on my weight loss program. After futsal, I went for lunch with my futsal mates and ended up in Taman Tun eating "lou shi fan" that tasted like food straight from heaven. Seriously it was that good, "Mama's Kitchen" located in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, a couple doors away from "Mou Tak Teng" officially serves the best "lou shi fan" in my book.

I have yet to write out two articles on Malacca food for Vincent's webpage. Maybe I might try it this weekend or maybe even tonight after dinner. Time, time, there is always too little time.

Today, I will begin a quest to learn as many new words I can as well as learn of the proper meaning to the ones I thought I new. Todays word shall be transgression.

trans·gres·sion Audio pronunciation of "transgression" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (trns-grshn, trnz-)
1. A violation of a law, command, or duty: “The same transgressions should be visited with equal severity on both man and woman” (Elizabeth Cady Stanton). See Synonyms at breach.
2. The exceeding of due bounds or limits.
3. A relative rise in sea level resulting in deposition of marine strata over terrestrial strata.
Note: taken from Dictionary.com

Finally the haze has left my housing area. I can finally see things clearly as well as breathe in some fresh air. Here is a picture my neighbour Yahkid took last week. Sorry there are no comparison photos about.

Wednesday, 10 August 2005

Hazy days ahead

As I walk downstairs from my office, only to be outside the entrance to the factory floor, dust and smog gets into my eyes and my throat releases a cry for help. The haze is back, and its back in force. With no apparent help from nature, what more can I do? Yesterday I was a little skeptical about the haze saying that it would go away soon but no, its much worse.

Even at the factory floor, the air is not clean, the very sight of haze is apparent. Little but still bad enough for me to smell it's effects. Even the R&D Studio is filled with that ghastly haze. Sigh, so much for a pleasant workplace. Even the face masks the company provided seem to be of little improvement to the smell.

Bah, I need to drink more water....

Anyway, I heard that a guy died right after playing the computer for 50 straight hours.

Also here is something amusing for you guys and gals out there.

Men are like....
1. Men are like .......Laxatives ..... They irritate the shit out of you.
2. Men are like .....Bananas ...... The older they get, the less firm they are.
3. Men are like .....Weather ..... Nothing can be done to change them.
4. Men are like ......Blenders ... You need One, but you're not quite sure why.
5. Men are like ......Chocolate Bars .... Sweet, smooth, and they usually head right for your hips.
6. Men are like ....Commercials ...... You can't believe a word they say.
7. Men are like .......Department Stores .... Their clothes are always 1/2 off.
8. Men are like ......Government Bonds .... They take soooooooo long to mature.
9. Men are like .....Mascara ...... They usually run at the first sign of emotion.
10. Men are like ......Popcorn .... They satisfy you, but only for a little while.
11. Men are like ....... Lava Lamps .... Fun to look at, but not very bright.
12. Men are like .......Parking Spots ....... All the good ones are taken, the rest are handicapped.

Tuesday, 9 August 2005

Hidden in the midst of a crowd

Have you ever felt so lonely before even though you are standing in the middle of a crowd? Have you ever felt so left out that whatever you do seem to have no affect on anything around you? Have you ever heard someone said about being aware of others and no one seems to bother about you?

Playing in a band rocks, it really does, but being the usual happy-go-lucky kind of guy I am, I don't mind how the band actually plays or how loud my music is. Nah, I just like it if the band coordinates well together. That is all I ask for. Sensitivity to the rest of the other band members play an important role because it affects the entire team's dynamics.

I hate playing in a monotone, I hate playing when nobody knows how to control their own volume, I hate it when everyone tries to show off their skills while drowning out the rest of the band, I hate it when nobody takes notice of other team members during practice, I hate it when people don't make the effort to try to listen to the song before practice whilst giving excuses, I hate it when people try to bring up their "defences" whenever they are criticised, I hate it nobody listens to the worship leader, I hate it when people try to help out or give advice only to make a simple mistake and get everyone ridiculing that person, I hate it when no one is encouraging at all, I hate it when everyone is playing for the sake of being in a band rather than leading people to worship, I hate it when people come for practice with the wrong attitude, I hate it when people stall practice because no effort was made before, I just hate it...

I just hate it...

Which could be equivalent to me hating myself...

Maybe I shouldn't be part of the band. I know there is no such thing as perfection. Or maybe I am just crying out for attention shouting, "Oh look, listen to me play the acoustic guitar", which evidently you do for the first minute and then nothing for the rest of the entire time. Maybe I should just turn off my volume and just kneel down and worship God, or maybe I should forget about everything and go on keeping everything to myself, or maybe I should just forget about the band. Maybe I should just leave.

1. To feel hostility or animosity toward.
2. To detest.
3. To feel dislike or distaste for:

1. Perhaps; possibly.

But then again nothing in this world is perfect. If everyone were to complain about at least something that annoys them, then there would be trillions of problems. So what can I do about it? It is said that every dark cloud has a silver lining. So am I supposed to search for that silver glimpse of hope? Or should I stay hidden in the midst of the crowd as what most people do? Or should I just voice out my humble opinions and take all the attention to myself? But then what is my main intention?

Again, what everyone's intentions?

Saturday, 6 August 2005

Bowling through life

I just returned home from my department's annual bowling tournament. Phew, organising it single handedly was extremely tiring. All accounts accounted for and I really do hope everyone had a great time. Will announce the results to everyone during morning assembly.

Its really late and I have my mandarin class tomorrow.

Another 6 hours of sleep for me....

I wonder if my eyes can stay open during class. Coffee is definitely a must on tomorrow's breakfast menu. Will be heading out to the KL PC Fair after class and then head over to DUMC to watch "A Little Less Conversation". So much planned out.

I feel so inadequate sometimes.