Tuesday, August 29, 2006

I was served!

Last night, I was served... a sumptuous good dinner..

My wife had returned home early to whip a meal for me and our daughter.
A full fledged 3 dish , 1 soup and rice typical chinese dinner.
I was overwhelmed.

Firstly, I always thought I cooked better than her.
Secondly, I thought it'd take a long time to whip up something like that...

And yet, when I reached home, dinner was already laid up and ready for consumption.

Little miracles like these doesn't need an abundance of wealth to be enjoyed.
Such are the days I am happy to be who I am.

Apparently, our daughter is happy too, she got to go downstairs because we were so full from the dinner that we needed a long walk.

To top it all off, there was also breakfast in the morning also which was also fantastic!

Monday, August 28, 2006

How I Ditched Windows with Linux (UBUNTU)

My windows OS has been constantly giving me problems recently..

No, there are no problems on my hardware, just the cranky Microsoft Operating System trying to give its hell to the user. I am not going to re-install the entire windows all over again.

If I was ever to re-install a new OS, it will have to be something better than Windows..

For eye candy, the new MACBOOK PRO definitely attracted me for some time.
However, the price of the delectable Apple laptop isn't something which I consider cheap, not even by its 24 or 36 months installment plans..

The next alternative I had was to run Linux.
And so, a few magazines and some downloads later, here I am running Linux using the Ubuntu distro.

As to how I decided on which distro to use, the following website gave me a very good idea.

DistroWatch.com Website for top 10 Linux Distros

Apparently, though Linux is free, there are also many commercial versions with proper support.
However, these commercial releases also have their own "Free" versions with public forums support from users all around the world.

Some say that the "Free" versions are actually testing platforms for the commercial releases.
ie Novell SUSE vs OPENSUSE [ both also available off Novell's website apparently ]
ie Red Hat Linux vs Fedora Core [ from same company also ]

And what made me choose UBUNTU [ other than the fact that it is at the top of the list in DISTROWATCH ] ?

See the extract of the description of UBUNTU's history from Distrowatch

DistroWatch.com's Summary of Ubuntu

UBUNTU has stormed the Linux distribution scene like no other Linux project before. It has done so in a fashion resembling a highly sophisticated player: it seems to have first observed all other major distributions, learnt from their mistakes and combined the best features of all of them into one superior product. A six-month's release cycle, up-to-date package set, a clearly set product lifetime (at 18 months), fast download mirrors, great documentation, even free CDs and free shipment of CDs anywhere in the world to those interested in the distribution. That's Ubuntu.

The project is funded by Mark Shuttleworth. Those who have never heard the name, Mark is a South African entrepreneur who made a fortune when he sold his company, Thawte Consulting, to Verisign, for US$575 million in late 1999. He appears to be a generous person: after the sale, he reportedly paid bonuses of one million Rand each (about US$163,000 at the time) to every one of his employees. He also founded several educational and open source initiatives around South Africa, including Go Open Source. While it is not yet clear how Mark's Canonical Limited intends to make money from Ubuntu, the distribution is certainly off to a good start, at least in terms of getting the name into public consciousness and offering a solid alternative to more established Linux distributions.

On the technical side of things, Ubuntu is based on Debian Sid (unstable branch), but with more up-to-date packages, inclusive of the latest GNOME packages. The distribution is designed to be used on desktops and servers, with a supported upgrade path from Debian 3.0 (Woody). One of its more interesting features is the fact that the "root" account is disabled by default; the first registered user after installation is granted superuser privileges through the "sudo" command. This measure, while it might sound like an inconvenience at first, has to be applauded since it encourages good security practices.

Pros: Great community of developers and users; fixed release cycle and support period; upgrade path from stable Debian provided
Cons: Ubuntu's backers have not yet built a viable business model around the distribution
Software package management: APT (DEB)
Free download: Yes

Firstly, they ship the CDs to you free of charge [ take 4-6 weeks ] but what a committment this is even though they haven't figured a way to make money out of it yet..
Well, of course it is also downloadable off multiple mirrors, with today's connection speeds, it may just be faster to download, depending on where you are located.

Secondly, the boss himself actually paid his ex-employees an equal share when he sold of his ex-company to VeriSign. A whooping US$163000 to each employee. It goes to show his committment to his employees and with his UBUNTU totall free, again shows off his committment, now towards the society.

I quote the elaboration of the word "Ubuntu" from the Ubuntu website itself.

UBUNTU : an African word, meaning " Humanity to others" or "I am who I am because of who we all are"

The UBUNTU linux distribution brings the spirit of Ubuntu to the software world.

In short, and in my own words...

Some eye candy for linux here [ aka how the linux can be made to look like the MAC OSX ]
Mac OSX Desktop look with Mac Style Launcher

Video of the OSX style eye candy for windows effects [ Much better than windows ]

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Tunnelling around Vietnam : HCMC

Vietnam is a country, not a war..
Since the early 70s, vietnam has been trying to shake off its image as a war torn country.

Was there in Ho Chi Minh City(HCMC) for a short trip with the missus...
Generally friendly people whom speak english marginally...

Much french influence since it was a french colony long time back.
Even the written language somewhat resembles the french written language with its scripting of how the vowels should be pronounced.

Saw the war museums and the actual Cuchi tunnels that was used during the Vietnam war with USA.
Learnt from its history that as the US troops tried to clear off the forest so as to locate the vietcongs, they used a defoliation agent aka Agent Orange, which could speedily destroy the forest and crops so as to facilitate ease of air survellience to find out where the vietcongs were. (Not knowing that the vietcongs are all underground in well networked tunnels right beside their basecamp near the edge of Saigon)

And these chemicals from Agent Orange actually had many side effects which apparently caused various cancers in troops(from both sides) whom were exposed to the Agent Orange.

Even though Agent Orange was also used in other US wars such as the korean war, USA did admit the side effects and paid hefty compensations to all other countries whom were affected during their war with USA... All except Vietnam... because..... it is still a communist country.

The tour guide whom was more proficient in English actually enlightened us with that fact that the only thing that was communist in the country was its government administration..

Everything else was Capitalism! Yay!

Due to globalisation, modernisation and Capitalism, more foreign investors come in..
KFC was actually first opened in vietnam in less than 2 years ago.
MacDonald's haven't opened any outlet in Vietnam yet, which was quite amazing since from where I came from, its hard to not see a MacDonald's every 2 bus stops.

Anyhow, Bien Thai market provided us with the shopping leisure activity though I enjoyed Vietnam's history lesson more than its shopping.

Plan to go there again for its pristine beaches.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Goodbye Singapore .... hehe at least for 4 days

It's National Day for Singapore and I am leaving the country....
for 4 days..

I cannot bear to see any more propaganda by the people in white on this joyous day..

Though I will not be celebrating the Nation's birthday..
My ears will ring of "Count on Me Singapore" even as I board the plane as this is the last song I heard on the taxi over the radio as I reached the budget terminal...

Signing off... after leeching the use of the free "internet" PC desktop at budget terminal... only max of 15min per each use.. i am left with last 60 secs now

Hello Vietnam!!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Finally it's mine.. after 4 years of waiting

Today, I finally got my own domain name.. based on the nickname I had given myself more than 16 years ago..


It was the game "Wing Commander" that needed a Callsign on top of the name I have keyed in for myself... without giving much thought, I decided to give myself the Callsign of "FarBird".

And the nickname stuck with me since then..

Ever since I got my first credit card about 4 years ago, I'd been wanting to register a .com address based on my nickname. But sadly, it was owned by someone else, somewhere in the world..

Fortunately, I was doing the routine domain name checks and realised it was free again!

Today, I proudly re-declare to the world again.......

....i am farbird....

Google me. I am now almost everywhere.

Friday, August 04, 2006

I am only 33% Singaporean

Just less than 3 months ago, Singapore had re-elected its govt.

Thank to 66.6% of the general public whom call themselves Singaporean, the incumbent has been re-elected to be the majority.

And the below shows just some of the ridiculous policies that have been implemented just right after the incumbent have been re-elected.

1) Taxi fare increase
2) Power tariff increase
3) Bus/MRT fare increase
4) ERP gantries increase

Are they testing the public to see if they can continue to milk the public dry ??

To test the people to their extremes????


Can the 66.6% now answer for the actions of the govt?

Or were the 66.6% hoodwinked?

66.6 % ?

Today I declare myself 33.3% Singaporean...
Because I refuse to be associated with the other foolish 66.6%.

Also seen in this thread I posted in HWZ forum
Click here to view the forum post