Archive for June, 2008

I wish it wasn’t so

Posted: June 29, 2008 by ralliart12 in Roadblocks
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Mum’s feet’s hurting again, swollen too. She says it hurts when she walks, as it always does. She’s literally on her feet all day, the very moment she wakes up to goto work. Due to the nature of her job, she get no opportunity to rest those soles. I would have advise her to seek medical attention, but I kinda expect western medical practice to be of little help(at the clinic level, not those hospital specialist-level). I’m unsure whether chinese medical halls’re of much help too.

The truth of the matter, is that at her age & health condition, she should not be subjected to much work-stress already, be it physical or physiological. Too bad I’m currently quite useless &  probably continue to remain so for at least the next couple of years, henceforth I’m unable to take-over her mantle as one of the income-provider of this household. I really wish I can help her, but I dunno how. She is sometimes bitter, not by nature but by circumstances. & frankly speaking, I dun blame her. I will gladly give a few years of my life so that she can not only live longer but live healthier too. Too bad the Devil have no use for my worthless soul yet.

If only I know how to be of tangible assistance … 😦


Am I asking for too much?

Posted: June 24, 2008 by ralliart12 in Technopia
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I just want a simple device to capture some faint existence of my memories. To peer at this queer world at different angles. To take a crystal view at every corner of life from different perspectives. And finally to sit in a corner and savor each moment while I sort through these memories.

But you took it away. I held it in my hands and you destroyed it. I cannot fix it. I can’t fix everything. I can’t undo this situation, and frankly speaking, the situation has left me undone. How many times must happiness and salvage been placed in my arms, only to be removed soon after?

I scrutinized the lens and the smudges seems to have taken a turn for the worse, spreading like a rampant virus. I can’t tell if that’s the lens or the reflection of tears streaking across my eyes as I watch this vision corrupts in front of me…

Why dun you kill me and deny my painful existence?

“Wanted” starts this Thursday!

Posted: June 24, 2008 by ralliart12 in Filmstrip
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Finally! Here’s a few screen captures of the exotic bullets expended in this movie, to whet your appetitate.

The device encountered its 1st power-up today. The screen protector had a greenish hue to it and it affected the image representation (to the end-viewer), especially in the night. However, the greenish tint isn’t that apparent in bright daylight. The mini-tripod is completely useless, i.e. the ball-&-socket joint can never be tightened fully. That, coupled with the extreme left position of the FX520’s tripod receptacle, meant that I’m not gonna use this mini-tripod anymore (I dun wan this camera to go off-balance & topple over).

So much for low-quality screen protector and lack-lustre mini-tripod 😦

The image quality isn’t that fantastic either, the famous “noise issue” of the Panasonic sensor is beginning to haunt me. I went to my friend’s house-warming and the initial few shots (in daylight), exhibit artifacts that fall slightly below my expected standards, as you can see from the photos below (the SLK is NOT mine):

The only thing cool is the auto-subject-tracking, which really works. Other than that, I guess I’ve made a decision and should by all means, stand by it. Who knows, this camera may grow on me yet…

Many a times people I have encountered threw the above qn at me. These folks possess a false sense of security in that they believe implementation of an antivirus solution will render their workstation impervious to any forms of threats whatsoever, be it au naturale or repercussions from their dangerous internet surfing habits.

Let me just put it this way: does having a neighborhood police post within your residence’s vicinity, absolutely & totally eliminates any chances of criminal behaviour in the area? No right? Sure, the crime rates are largely reduced, & criminal are very much deterred. Even those criminal intentions that manifest into reality may be resolved quickly due to increased patrols and manpower available.

BUT not even the police force can guarantee 100% crime-free results. Similarly, an antivirus solution serves to protect the node from a very large percentage of the viral threat that ravages the Internet. It may also serves as a potent tool to remove selected virus that has already infiltrated your system. But it is not 100%.

Before you ask “then I install antivirus for what?” Let me throw a question (instead of a chair) right back at you: “Then you dun install lor…you see what will happen”. For the anal-retentive readers, half of the time, such victims are not even infected by a virus, but rather, spyware & adware. We(or I), do not teach you how to use those anti-malware tools because most end-users are not patient enough to analyse logs, or experienced enough to review Task Manager & spot rogue processes.

Hope my analogy will help other front-line IT support counterparts out there. Here’s another analogy for you fellows, should you need to explain the concept of hardware bottlenecks to others:

“How come my computer so slow huh? Is it Windows, not enough RAM, hard disk not big enough, etc”

The whole computing experience is essentially reduced to 2 major processes: transporting data to-&-for, & interpreting the data. Picture your computer (especially the components within) as a bunch of different types of cars traveling on many different roads of different lanes transporting different no. of people. The breakdown is as such:

  • People – data
  • Road – data connection
  • Car – memory device/component
  • No. of lanes – bandwidth

Typically, the infrastructure is designed in tandem with the no. and types of vehicles transversing the connection. Any highway may be 4- or 5-lane and supports well enough the traffic input. However, if there was a sdden increase in the no. of cars travelling a certain portion at one shot, the highway may be inadequate. This is equivalent to “not enough bandwidth”, or the people who designed the bus speed of the motherboard hasn’t factor in the emergence of ultra-speed devices carrying data across them boards yet. Even the cars may be different makes, akin to thumbdrives or mass storage devices that can feed/send data at different speed into the computer or out of it.

Well, enough analogies for today. I’m slightly exhausted.

Here’s a few Google Maps capture to show the relative distances between selected locations and my residence. Now, imagine e fact that I dun drive. Next, imagine e fact that most bus stops are not near the locations. And then, imagine the ridiculous frequency of bus services that SBS has assigned such locations.

Finally, I dun need to imagine. Cos all the above, are real to me 😦

It’s always nobody’s fault. But is it mine to be trapped in such circumstances. I dun like my track record to be tarnished too, yet 40% of the time I’m in situations where I’m asked to accomplish impossible or illogical things.

Pushing a trolley stacked with a desktop PC, a laser printer & a LCD monitor, in the rain, searching round and round for an address that turns out to be erronous…NOT AMUSING.

At that moment, I wasn’t disturbed by the fact that I haven’t had a meal since being sent to a Changi site in the late morning. I wasn’t worried about falling sick from the rain. I was worried the invoice and cardboard boxes were getting wet from the rain!

And to top it off there were miscommunication between the client & the people who issued my instructions. And since I’m at the frontline, guess who suffered the wrath of the client 😦

And to the client, you’re not a humorous, old, charismatic Frenchman. You’re JUST old.

Movie after-tots: “Kungfu Panda”

Posted: June 15, 2008 by ralliart12 in Filmstrip
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Kungfu Panda is fantastic, even more so when I was dragged in without any expectations. Famous quotes I liked include:

“There’s no charge for awesome-ness. Or being handsome”

“Woah, I’ve only seen paintings of that painting”

Other than that, please do everyone a favour and bring ur kids and the inner child in you to watch it. It’s a $9 show, choked full of entertainment. I especially loved the scene where Tai Lang escaped from captivity; it’s as if he’d a million years worth of training. Btw, I strongly recommend watching the English version, due to the intended nature of some of the sentences.

Got my new digicam today! The Lumix FX-520. Yes, I did get it from the PC Show in the end, but that’s after tons of research and comparison throughout the Internet. In the end the promotional offer I’ve got from the show is:

  • Camera unit
  • 1*  Class 6 4GB Lexar SDHC card
  • 1 * Class 2 4GB Lexar SDHC card
  • 1 extra no-brand 3rd party battery
  • 1 lame & useless mini-tripod
  • 1 not-so-pretty original black Panasonic camera case
  • 1 supposedly-worth-$10 LCD screen protector

Yup, all that for $590. Outside rates fluctuate around $555 to $585, with varying degrees of bundled freebies.

Waiting to test-drive the unit during the upcoming gardening exhibition in SunTec from the 25th. Indoor subjects + a myriad of colors = good camera testing ground.

P.S. Had a slight mishap with the screen protector application. The stickers indicating the ORDER of which protective layers(of the screen protector) to be taken off, WERE reversed!!! I almost tot the adhesive had dried up. Tried a couple of minutes to stick the NON-sticky side of the sp to the LCD is NOT AMUSING.

Going thru the instruction manual now…

Movie after-tots: “The Happening”

Posted: June 13, 2008 by ralliart12 in Filmstrip
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Caught e 11pm screening of “The Happening” at e ol’ run-down theatres of JEC today. It’s a film by M Night Shyamalan (the “M” stands for “Manoj” btw). I wanted to catch it because I wanna noe the cause of such a large-scale massacre as depicted in its trailer. Coming from the director who gave u “Signs”, “Unbreakable”, & “The Sixth Sense“, I hope the twist is adequate.

Spoiler ahead!!!

For those who just wanna know the twist, highlight the chunk of text below:
Plants are emitting toxins into the air to induce suicidal & fatal moves from human beings.

For those who dismiss this premise as ludacris, I know for a fact tat this is scientifically known & proven. But anyway this is, IMO, not a $8.50 twist, perhaps a $5 twist but definitely nth more. Now now, I’m not saying the movie sucks(that much anyway). I, for one, enjoyed the evenly distributed death scenes. They include:

  • Stabbing hairpin into throat
  • Construction workers walking off planks
  • Zookeepers getting lions to chew off arms
  • Grass cutters hanging themselves using their equipment
  • People crashing their vehicles into trees
  • People getting large lawn mowers to drive over them
  • Policemen shooting themselves
  • Old lady banging her head into glass windows
  • Math teacher cutting his wrist

You get the idea…once or twice M Night inserted a few lame attempts to throw us off the tracks but then again, not that fantastic, I suppose it’s an even crappier show for those who can’t relate to the premise(unlike me, whom has interest in weird things). Overall, a $6 kinda show, almost bordering on a “wait-for-its-DVD” level. Dun bring ur kids to watch it at night too.

Here’s a red-band trailer for those who wants a highlight of some of the death-scenes (SEVERELY NOT for kids!):