Category Archives: internet

Pumping words/text to my blog from my Androphone

Image representing HTC as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

As mentioned sometime ago, this is my new blog, a successor to my old blog at thank goodness that ‘almost’ all entries from my old blog has been succesfully imported to this new place. Actually it has been my dream to have my own dotcom domain, and now that I finally have it, I’m gonna blog with more motivation than I used to be.

And you know what? This post is composed on my new Androphone, and it’s also has been my dream to have an Androphone. LG Optimus One may not sound much compared to a certain popular brand like HTC but at least it fulfilled some of my dreams.


A theme can’t be this cool

Image representing as depicted i...
Image via CrunchBase just announced an old feature that most of its longtime users should have known already. It’s the so-called “Custom CSS” thing (you can read it here). “Infinite Theme Styles with Custom CSS”? My ass! Google doesn’t charge Blogger ( users any cent for offering complete theme customization, yet, however, make this ‘tiny’ feature available only as a paid upgrade? I said it’s ‘tiny’ because it doesn’t involve any uploads that might be a better reason for them to charge people. They could have just offer stuff like that absolutely free!

Seriously I think should learn more from Google. No, I’m not saying Google’s Blogger platform is better where in fact do offer more features but definitely there are a few things should learn from the Blogger platform. First, like what I’ve said above, they should not charge users for little thing as simple as customizing the theme. Seriously why make users pay when they are actually make your place looks more beautiful? Even if it’s free bot users and you will benefit from the freedom.

Second, domain name mapping also requires a user to pay for such feature, where in Google’s Blogger, again, the custom domain mapping comes free of all costs. While it’s nearly impossible to scientifically say that this feature is more advanced than customizing CSS, it’s still a very simple thing that doesn’t require you to have a hi-school diploma to use it. It may be cheap but it’s still expensive if we consider that it’s not doing much other than redirecting your blog from a 3rd party host to your own domain without worrying too much about getting a dedicated host.

The third one is you can only add up to 35 authors per blog. 35 might be overkill for most people but I’m expecting it to be at least half of what the Blogger platform is offering, which is up to 100 authors. It’s true that I as the author of this article don’t use such feature (as well as other two features mentioned above) but it doesn’t mean my points are unjustified. I think for a blogfarm like this, should at least have the “follow” feature in order to compensate this,  just like the Google’s Blogger has (though this can be added via Google widget).

Last but not least, as I’ve mentioned about Google Widget, I’m not really sure whether that would be possible or not because there are very limited HTML/Javascript support in the widget. Simply embedding Javascript code from external services in the HTML widget may or may not work at all, and the worse part of it is I heard that Javascript support in HTML widget is completely disabled. Not sure whether this is available in the premium features but as far as I know there is no mention about it.

Seriously is just charging its users too much, well not in terms of the amount we need to pay for upgrades but the numbers of upgrades that we need to pay for. They already charging people for getting larger hosting space as part of their premium features, not to mention their VIP hosting too (the rest of premium features are available here) so why must they be greedy to charge users for almost half of the features. Maybe there are people who think I should not complain too much since I’m using the service right now. I’d say it’s lame. It’s because I’m the user that I have the right to complain. Think again.

I know business thing is a business thing and there are things that can’t be offered for free, but the point is, if there are people who can offer them for free, why can’t us? If it’s me I’d rather not say selfish things like “If you don’t like it then go elsewhere” or “it’s our way or the high way”. As far as I know all users are given 1GB storage for media. My idea is, if it’s too much to offer the above free for all users I’d prefer them to cut the storage capacity into half and make the above features free. Besides it’s not like we can’t do hotlinking to images or other multimedia content.

Justifying the iPhone

got the iPhone4 in my hand, finally (gonna put in on a stress... on Twitpic

Just a couple of days ago I was talking about my ‘genius’ friend who was about to get the iPhone 4. Well, it looks like I’m being the one to get it first before him though I never really planned for it before this. Yes, I’m now officially the owner of iPhone 4 (pictured above), but I have to say that ownership part is half-true, half-false.

It’s half-true (or half-false, depending on how you see it) because I paid half of the price while another half is paid by my girlfriend. In other words, I’m holding 1/2 share of the ownership, making me a co-owner of the iPhone 4. Actually it was my girlfriend who’s so passionate about getting it. She could have bought it herself but I somehow wanted to experience it myself when my girlfriend first mentioned about getting it thus I agreed to have a share on it. My first impression? Not that bad but not that great either.

Having the phone in my hand makes me wonder what if Apple didn’t make a smartphone but went for a ‘dumbphone’ instead? I bet nobody would buy it even if it is from Apple. Chances are the ‘dumbphone’ from Apple would be just another overpriced Nokia and won’t sell that way. So it’s quite makes sense for Apple to make it smartphone and on top of that to build the best smartphone possible to make it stand out from the rest of its rivals.

As usual Apple seems don’t mind selling their products with premium price but somehow with iPhone they used a modified formula. In order to make buyers feel like they are getting what they paid for Apple not only rely on the design but also adopting the latest and the best technology they could carry out on a phone. So what makes a cellphone a smartphone? Touchscreen alone is not enough. Many earlier smartphones already have it, except that most of them rely on stylus for the screen input and most of them are also geared for one-hand operation in order to compete with the traditional keypad operation. Apple thought giving a smartphone a multitouch capability for its screen would give it an edge over the rest of rivalling models but I personally think it’s a bad idea. Most people only use one hand for phone operation which is why it’s a phone, which also means most people wouldn’t bother to use the multitouch feature anyway. Therefore from Apple we get a phone with capacitive (multi-touch) screen and a few other whistles and bells.

Should a smartphone has capacitive display instead of resistive? Some might argue that a phone is bad if it requires more than a hand to operate it. Alright, iPhone is not a phone that needs both of your hand to work but because of it’s multitouch nature, it has extra functions and features that traditional touchscreen smartphones doesn’t have though I doubt not many people bother to use that feature anyway. Some other people might argue differently by saying there’s no point of getting a touchscreen smartphone if you’re only going to use one hand to operate it; better get a traditional keypad-type phones. For me I have to say the latter argument is weak because touchscreen offers an alternative to keypad input since writing is more natural, flexible and dynamic than typing. Speaking of writing, multitouch display isn’t as good as most people thought. For instance capacitive requires special kind of stylus if you want to write on the screen, unless you’re OK of doing so using only your finger gestures (which I prefer not to). Resistive allows virtually any tip of solid object to substitute the stylus if you lost it. I remember writing notes on iPaq PDA (anybody remember that?) using the tip of my necktie clip. Not to mention how I missed the Graffiti on the legacy Palm PDA series. It was fun and my only concern was the handwriting recognition algorithm although things keep improving each year which greatly reduced the error rate in the recognition. By the way I prefer the way Palm separated the Graffiti from the working display, because the stylus won’t get in our sight, although input on the screen works too. I also like the way Nintendo doing the similar thing on their mobile console, the N-DS where despite it adopted the dual-screen design, the user’s focus is emphasized on the upper screen while the lower, secondary display acts as a touchscreen interface for the stylus as part of the game controls. That’s why even if this iPhone 4 support some awesome 3D gaming, I won’t dedicate it for mobile gaming as how I did with my Nokia N-GAGE QD before, because I don’t like my gaming display disturbed or interfered by my fingers.

So does being the co-owner of iPhone 4 makes me more tolerant towards iProducts? Not a bit, in fact I still hate it. It took Apple three generations of iPhone before they could first came up with multitasking OS, despite the OS is a derivation of Apple’s desktop system counterpart. The only explanation I could think for this is the iPhone OS (predecessor of iOS 4), a mobile port of Mac OS X is not stable enough for multitasking (for your info, even the multitasking in Mac OS X itself took a very different approach than most other OS, which may be the culprit of why the OS initially is not suitable to be re-scaled for mobile device). I even heard there’s this issue about memory leakage or something like that, making multitasking in iPhone OS was not a good idea or almost impossible. I could say the previous iPhones are unfinished product because they’re preloaded with immature OS. Not to mention the arrogance of Apple of ignoring the current standards (eg. Flash). In my case I’m getting the iPhone 4 as a geek, not as a fanboy. This is just another hi-tech toy for me to play around, so I guess I’ll tinker around it a little more (and add some more troll in in the process).

And I don’t understand too why developers (both hardware and software) keep spoiling and favoring iProducts from time to time. It even irritates me more when they somehow has special unit or division to develop stuff specific for iProducts, as if iProducts are that important to the IT world. iProducts may be influential enough to control the tide and wind in the IT world but not jumping into the Apple bandwagon is not a bad thing either. I hope those developers didn’t doing so just because they think having Apple in their product support range is cool.

SPAM comments are funneh (Part II)

no spam!
Image via Wikipedia

I received average 1 spam comments for every article I posted here. Although Akismet spam catcher did a good job of capturing them all, it is still annoying to have to manually delete them. I know it is designed to work like that to reduce false positives but I still wish for to have a setting to auto-delete those spam comments because I don’t really mind even if they are legitimate comments thought to be a spam by the Akismet system. For me in false positive cases like this I’d not blame the system but rather the person who send comments that have spam characteristics. Actually having your ‘legitimate’ comments treated as spam is not a big deal. If you see the comments you posted before never appear, just post them again but with some difference. You know, when your comments got caught that way usually there are only 3 reasons behind it; the website owner are not professional enough and took offense of your comments and deleted it, or your comments are just deserved to be deleted because you said nothing but trolling, or it’s caught by the anti-spam system (either because it is an intended spam or you don’t know what you were doing is spamming). I believe I’ve seen this auto-delete spam feature in WordPress before (in the form of Akismet settings) but I can’t find the setting in should really consider to make the option available to users if they can’t implement what I’m going to suggest below.

Now I think should take their spam prevention system to one step further. The existing system only catch spam only after they arrived at the comment inbox. I think the spam prevention should be done even before comments could be sent. Some websites use CAPTCHA/reCAPTCHA or similar system for this, which require the commenter to prove him/herself is a human first. So I think if Akismet could scan comments once they arrived at comment inbox, why can’t it try scanning the comments even before it was posted? Alright, I understand this might be hard to implement regardless what system is being used (CAPTCHA or Akismet). For example, allows comment to be posted via email which the system have no control at all. But still it’s better to have Akismet work before any spam is sent to prevent more spam rather than just working passively like it is right now, or at least eliminate them even before they could reach the comment inbox.

The Mobile Broadband Dilemma

DiGi Logo
Image via Wikipedia

Although I just subscribed to the DiGi‘s 10GB Broadband Plan but then I realized there’s no 3G connection at my neighborhood and got stuck with EDGE connection only. Not really bad but it’s impossible to use that to download anime episodes for now, at least until I move out closer to the city center where 3G is guaranteed available. Now I feel like I was deceived and stupid. It’s not entirely my fault actually. When I saw the promotion at telco shop at shopping mall nearby (very close, within a walking distance from my home) I thought it’s already available at my place here. Besides I’ve been planning to switch to DiGI Broadband for quite sometime, or to be specific since Celcom increased the price for additional quota, so I thought it was the right time to switch but I was wrong.

Recently Celcom increased the speed of their Broadband Basic Plan from 384kbps (typical 3G speed) to 512kbps. Sounds nice but actually it’s a bad news for new subscribers. People who subscribe to Celcom Broadband Basic after the upgrade took place will have to live with only 3GB worth of data transfer per month. I’m lucky as I’ve subscribed it for more than a year and I can still enjoy my monthly 5GB allocated quota. So is DiGi Broadband worth signing up? I’ve tried using it at city center and it’s indeed stable and speedy as claimed. While I never checked the authenticity of their claim of having average download speed at 700kbps (that’s even faster than Celcom’s recently upgraded download speed) I am quite satisfied that it’s indeed faster than my existing Celcom Broadband. My only hope is for them to expand the coverage soon or I’ll have to do either to stop my subscription or to move closer to the city center.

Well at least this new broadband package I just subscribed is not subject to any contract and I only pay less than 100 buck for the modem, which is way cheaper than buying it from the IT store. And the best thing is it can work with my Celcom SIM card, unlike the modem I got when I subscribed to Celcom 3G before, which is locked to Celcom. Having no contract means I can request for service termination anytime without having to return the modem back to DiGi as well as no penalty charge. Most importantly I can use the modem to replace the aging modem I got from Celcom. Anyways I’m thinking of using Celcom Weekly Prepaid Internet instead. While the daily prepaid allocated the subscribers with 384kbps speed with and 1GB bandwidth (6 bucks for 24 hours), I think the weekly prepaid is more money-saving (20 bucks per week, 2GB data). That means I’ll be paying around 80 bucks per month (at total 8GB data) or equals to 10 bucks per gigabyte of data.

Why do you hate Facebook?

Facebook logo
Image via Wikipedia

The above question is targeted to everybody who read this post. Believe me I’ve asked myself the same question before, and so does to some other people I met online or offline. Regardless of what they feel or think about Facebook, different people came up with different reasons of why they like or hate it. For most loyal Facebook users they have mixed thought about it. At some point they would like to continue using it though there re times they are complaining about it. For haters things are more ‘interesting’ Some of them started calling names on it such as F***book, Failbook and even Fagsbook.

Since I’ve asked myself the same question, I’ve come across some people who share the same sentiment with me. Actually I don’t care why people like or hate it, except for people who think Facebook is a crap but hypocritically looking for Facebook alternatives. I mean if they hate Facebook because of its ‘social’ nature then why look for the alternative like Diaspora or No-Fad? For me the reason I hate Facebook is the security and privacy concerns. Yes, it’s true that a user can tune the settings to suit their personal preferences but two years with Facebook taught me it’s not that easy.

I remember when I was still a Facebook user, the user personal page was loaded with AJAX-heavy elements and annoying (or should I say irrelevant) ads. I’ve always have issues with AJAX so any so-called web 2.0 service with loads of AJAX will be automatically deemed as ‘bad’ to me no matter how awesome they are. Alright, I maybe a regular at Twitter but from my experience Twitter does not rely too much on AJAX and I found it is easier to my browser and my internet connection. Regarding ads, it’s not a new thing that Facebook users actually see ads that are displayed based on their profile.

So how does Facebook’s ads works? This maybe a rumor but from unofficial surveys conducted all over the net, the ads are always consistent with users’ preferences, although in my case many of them are irrelevant but still most of them are based on my interest. I’m not really blaming Facebook for that because that’s how they make money and luckily I have adblocker extension installed in my browser so I could get rid of them. however I still personally think using a user’s personal interest to look for a marketing target is somewhat unethical so I hope the rumor is not true.

Actually what annoys me the most about Facebook is I frequently and continuously mistaken as an acquaintance by people who actually don’t know me in real life. Yeah, maybe it’s my fault for not using my real life picture but it’s not entirely my fault either. Half of it is caused by Facebook limitation of not allowing me to use my full name. Yes, my real name is too long but it is not supported by the naming convention adopted by Facebook. In that sense, Facebook is more like targeted toward western users and not the people from this region who mostly does not follow western naming scheme.

So what is my stance on Facebook? I seriously don’t recommend it for anybody though I won’t stop anybody from using it but I have to warn you, Facebook is not a platform for people who want a serious social life. If you want a proper social life, get real friends in real life. Facebook is just not a place to make new friends because it virtually allows anybody to add anybody as friends because all you need to do is to search for some name and the result containing countless of people with the same or similar name will appear. True, this may be a bit unethical but relying on online services for ‘true’ friends is not a good thing to begin with.

Don’t follow me on twitter if…

This is icon for social networking website. Th...
Image via Wikipedia

Don’t follow me on twitter if:

  1. You’re expecting an immediate followback from me. I need time to observe who are following me before I can decide to followback or not.
  2. You’re expecting a followback from me, only to brag about how many followers you have and claiming that you’re popular. Remember, I don’t simply followback people just because they are following me.
  3. You’re planning on stalking on me to wait for the moment I screwed up and then use it against me.
  4. You’re gonna shamelessly request for a followback. If you want a followback don’t ask me for it. I’ll followback you only if I think it’s worth it.
  5. You’re vulgar. I hate to see f-word in my timeline.
  6. You don’t have at least one common interest with me.
  7. You’re a marketer who want to approach me to sell me stuff. If I want to buy something I’ll look for them myself, don’t come to me.
  8. You follow me automatically just because of one interesting tweet from me although we basically don’t have any common interest.
  9. You set yourself to autofollow anyone based on certain terms that they tweeted.
  10. You’re not going to communicate with me. You should at least reply to one of my tweets in a manner like a human should do.
  11. You have no real tweets but only a repeated mentions (“@randomtweeps repeated-sentence-here”) to different random people.
  12. You have no real tweets but only retweets.
  13. You have no or almost no tweets at all, which means it doesn’t make sense if you follow me or anybody but you never tweet yourself.
  14. You’re not going to tweet much.
  15. You don’t tweet in English or you don’t know English. I hate English too but with English accepted as the international communication language, I’m expecting a follower who can communicate in English with me.

More to be added later.

(33/91 of my current followers in twitter are not worth following back)