Archive for January 2009

Sony enters the netbook battle

2009 is the year of the netbook. The new frontier and battle ground for all PC makers. It is estimated that 11.4 million netbooks were sold in 2008 and 21.5 million are expected to be sold in 2009. The latest contender to enter the netbook market is Sony. Sony launched their VAIO P series Pocket Style PC last Thursday at The National Museum and I’m honored to be invited to the media event.

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There are some debate on whether the VAIO P should be considered a netbook. I guess it’s a grey area.

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The VAIO P comes in a very interesting form factor. It has a 8 inch screen (Packed with 1600 x 768), weighs 620g (594g for the SSD model) and is 245 x 19.8 x 120mm (W x H x D). This makes the netbook fit nicely into the back pocket of your jean. I think it’s super stylo to carry a netbook on your back pocket. The VAIO P comes with 2 specs, a 60GB Harddisk version that comes with a an Intel Atom 1.33 GHz processor and a 64GB SSD version that comes with a 1.6 GHz processor.

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The keyboard is surprising comfortable to type with. In fact the keyboard is almost the same size as the normal keyboard. There is no touchpad on the VAIO P. Instead, the VAIO P comes with a trackpoint. I have no problem with that since I’m a great fan of trackpoint. But those who aren’t used to a trackpoint might want to take note.

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The design of the VAIO P looks great. It comes with 4 beautiful colours. Red, Green, Black and White. Or rather, Garnet Red, Olivine Green, Obsidian Black and Crystal White as mentioned in press release. And the shade of the colour changes with the lighting conditions. Nice.

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The downside of the VAIO P is that it is running Windows Vista. Oh no. Didn’t HP made that mistake in the past with their HP Mini 2133? Vista just isn’t meant for a netbook. And the 1.33GHz (1.60GHz for SSD version) Intel Atom processor isn’t helping much. But one good thing that Sony did was to include a quick launch button. It takes less than 30 seconds to power up to the instant on mode. The instant on mode interface looks kinda like the PSP user interface. From the instant on mode, you can access your pictures, music and video files. You can also surf the net using firefox and access IM with Pidgin. Overall, the instant on mode is pretty good and I feel that all netbook should include this mode.

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Strangely, the version that is coming to Singapore didn’t have build in 3G and GPS. I understand that the folks in the States are getting these 2 features on their VAIO P (at a higher price tag). But personally, I would prefer that Sony includes these 2 modules in the Singapore model.

The Sony VAIO P is expected to be launched in Singapore sometime mid Feb 2009. The 1.33 GHz model (with 60GB Harddisk) is expected to sell at around $1299. No news about the 1.60 GHz model with 64GB SSD.

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Hope I can get my hands on the unit soon and do a detailed review.

Thanks to Audrey and Deborah from Hill & Knowlton and Sony for the invite.

Just give me a McSpicy meal

Here is the process I went thru lately when placing an order at McDonalds.

Mcd: Hello, welcome to McDonalds.
Me: One McSpicy Meal, take away.
Mcd: Would you like to have a Mega McSpicy? (Mega means 2 piece of meat patty)
Me: No thanks.
Mcd: Upsize?
Me: No. (If I wanted to upside, I would say upsize right?)
Mcd: Want to change your fries to twister fries? (Yes, twister fries is back)
Me: No, normal fries will do.
Mcd: Coke for your drinks?
Me: Yes. (I thought the default drink is coke unless stated.)
Mcd: Any dessert to go along?
Me: No.
Mcd: Having here or take away?
Me: Take away. (If you notice, I already said take away in the beginning)
Mcd: Total will be $6.95

Which most likely explains why the queue at McDonalds is getting longer and longer. They asked too many questions even when the order is straight forward. Does anyone at McDonalds knows what is a McSpicy Meal? A McSpicy Meal comes with a McSpicy burger (single patty), Medium fries (not those twister type) and a small coke. Why is it so hard to order a McSpicy Meal? Why the need to ask so much question when my order is so clear to you?

If I wanted Mega McSpicy meal, I would have ordered Mega McSpicy instead of McSpicy. If I wanted upsize, I would have told you to upsize. If I wanted twister fries, I would have told you to change my fries to twister fries. If I wanted any drinks other than coke, I would have told you so. And if I want dessert, I would have ordered it without you asking.

Just give me a freaking McSpicy Meal without asking me a whole list of questions as if I’m taking an exam!

If only everything in life is as easy as the delete button on Facebook

It’s interesting that in the new media age, you can delete someone from facebook, block someone from MSN, unfollow someone from twitter and suddenly it seems like this person never existed in your life before. Like the path never cross and eyes never met. How convenient.

If only everything in life is as easy as the delete button on Facebook.

五月天 – 溫柔 (還你自由版)

走在风中 今天阳光 突然好温柔
天的温柔 地的温柔 像你抱著我
然后发现 你的改变 孤单的今后
如果冷 该怎么渡过

天边风光 身边的我 都不在你眼中
你的眼中 藏著什么 我从来都不懂
没有关系 你的世界 就让你拥有
不打扰 是我的温柔

不知道 不明了 不想要 为什么 我的心
明明是想靠近 却孤单到黎明
不知道 不明了 不想要 为什么 我的心
那爱情的绮丽 总是在孤单里
再把我的最好的爱给你

不知不觉 不情不愿 又到巷子口
我没有哭 也没有笑 因为这是梦
没有预兆 没有理由 你真的有说过
如果有 就让你自由

如果有一天
你告訴我 你要走
我不會強求 不會挽留

只因為…
我要給你 最後的溫柔

我會對你說

我給你自由 我給你自由
我給你自由 我給你自由
我給你全部全部全部全部自由!!

这是我的温柔 还你你的自由
这是我的温柔 还你你的自由 Oh…

MSN rejecting Adium 1.3.2 connections

Adium users are experiencing login problems today when they try to access MSN. Adium is a very popular MacOS IM client. It appears that MSN is rejecting connections from Adium 1.3.2. In fact, Pidgin users are also affected. Below info is taken from Adium’s blog. (The site is loading very slowly tonight. Most likely because everyone is accessing Adium’s website to check out what went wrong.)

MSN rejecting Adium 1.3.2 connections

Starting at about 20:00 PST tonight (January 11), Microsoft’s servers have stopped accepting logins from clients that use version 15 of the protocol, including Adium 1.3.2. The Debug Window in debug and beta versions of Adium reveals that their server is failing to find a certificate that it needs when Libpurple attempts to retrieve your MSN Address Book.

In case you’re wondering, this also affects Pidgin, which means it’s definitely not an Adium problem.

There are two ways to connect:

Use Microsoft Messenger for Mac, the official client.
Use Adium 1.3.1, the previous version of Adium.
We’re not sure whether this is a temporary server problem or a permanent change that will break P15-using Libpurple-based clients (including Adium 1.3.2) until a future Libpurple release. If it turns out to be the latter, we’ll almost certainly include that Libpurple update in our next 1.3.3 beta.

I’m currently using Microsoft Messenger for Mac which reminds me why I switched to Adium in the first place. Let’s hope that this problem can be resolved quickly or I’ll downgrade to Adium 1.3.1.

Update: The problem has been resolved. Adium 1.3.2 is able to connect to MSN now.

First punch, now burn. What’s next?

I guess by now most of you would have heard the news about Member of Parliament Mr Seng Han Thong being set ablaze on Sunday Morning. Mr Seng Han Thong is no stranger to assaults. In July 2006, he was punched at a meet-the-people session.

This time round, the attack was more serious. Mr Seng was at a bursaries award ceremony when a 70-year-old man pour a bottle of kerosene on his back and set it ablaze with a cigarette lighter. Mr Seng’s right face, scalp and back were severely burnt. He is now in hospital and might require skin grafting.

My first reaction when I heard the news was “Him again?” There are 80 plus Member of Parliament in Singapore. Why is it that he always get assaulted? Is there something wrong with him to begin with? I did a google on his name and found some people calling him a bootlicker. He suggested a stupid taxi surcharge and fuel surcharge. He also side step question from WP. In fact, I couldn’t find anything good about him online. Perhaps that the reason why someone set him ablaze.

For something to happen, there must be a reason. And perhaps Mr Seng Han Thong might want to use this time in hospital to do some self reflection to see why he keeps getting assaulted. Is he suitable to be a MP? Is he doing the right thing? If he isn’t, then perhaps he should resign before something worse happens. First punch, now burn. What’s next?

The new media is talking about this issue now. So far, most of the comments I read are those who cheered for the 70 year old man. Most of them supported the old man. Many were concerned for the 70 year old man and hope that he won’t be severely punished. Nobody will do such a thing without being pushed to the edge. Perhaps the old gentleman is having problems and couldn’t get help? Most people felt sorry for the old gentleman but not many of them have concern on Mr Seng. Quite sad. I guess he isn’t a well liked MP. OK, personally I also don’t really like him. He is one of those MP which makes me wonder how the hell did he managed to get into the Parliament.

I do hope the old gentleman doesn’t get punished too severely.

PS: We finally got justification for our Member of Parliament’s high salary. This is a high risk job. Bush only got 2 shoes being thrown at him. Our Singapore MP got people set fire on him. Which explains why our MP are better paid than the American President.