Joi Ito, Are you responsible for the HK World of Warcraft theme ?

October 31, 2007 Comments off

Uber blogger and serial entrepreneur Joi Ito recently announced that he has joined the board of Sanrio Digital. Joi had visited our offices a few months ago and at my request talked about his World of Warcraft guild where he spent a lot of time along with many other CEO’s

The question for Joi is, Are you responsible for this Hello Kitty World of Warcraft theme πŸ™‚

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Categories: General, Humor

Jeremiah Owyang interviews me

October 26, 2007 Comments off

Jeremiah Owyang of Forrestor Research very kindly posted an interview with me on his blog a few days ago.

Jeremiah was very kind to mention on his twitter feed that he enjoyed meeting me and considers me as a ‘web strategist’.
Jeremiah, Thank you for the encouragement. I hope I can live up to it. I’d like to thank my colleagues at Outblaze for their support and the interesting discussions we have

I made a comment in that video that I considered ‘Facebook as a fad’ and there were some rejoinders to it with commentators disagreeing with me.

I’d like to respond by making a few points

What I was trying to mention to Jeremiah that based on my observations, I felt that Facebook was a fad at present “within the Hong Kong Internet userbase”. Maybe it can sustain itself but its still early days.

Hong Kong like any other place people has its fads including collective obsessive behavior!. Ask anybody if the recollect the ‘Snoppy mania of 1998’.

As the above article states

Fads are nothing new in Hong Kong, where the crowded living conditions and a gregarious population make it a hothouse for all sorts of trends.

About the 150% mobile phone penetration rate, I apologize. The latest published numbers (July 2007) from OFTA who is Hong Kong’s regulator says its 139.8%. Maybe its 145+% today but 150% gets your attention better than 145% πŸ™‚

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Categories: General

Some interesting Leopard links

October 18, 2007 Comments off
  • Apple has made major changes to iCal in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, introducing integration with its own new WebDAV-based iCal Server included in Leopard Server. Here’s a comprehensive history of software-based calendar applications and a look at what’s new in iCal 3.0.
  • Apple OS X Leopard: A beautiful upgrade
    Finally, a PC Unix that everyone can love. OS X Leopard is a triumph of customer-focused engineering
Categories: Mac OSX

Spending time with Jeremiah Owyang

September 19, 2007 5 comments

The last few days have been a blur organising the HK Web Community bloggers event at Prive.

From various accounts, it was a very good turnout. Jeremiah Owyang who is going to start a new career with Forrester Research as social computing senior analyst, was very gracious with his time and tried to absorb a lot of what is happening in the Hong Kong web community by meeting as many people as he could

A small sampling of the photographs taken during the event

Jeremiah Owyang J Aaron Farr
numerous HK Bloggers Rebecca McKinnon

Afterwards we headed for dinner which involved having some authentic Szechuan cuisine. Rebbecca MacKinnon, a Professor at HKU , citizen journalist, former CNN reporter ate with great gusto whilst a few of us struggled with the lip and tounge numbing food.


Let's play 'Find the chicken amongst the peppers' That's where the Iraqi oil is going
Rebecca saying 'Don't try this at home' looks can be deceiving

Categories: General

Backing up my data to Amazon S3

September 4, 2007 Comments off

My current backup strategy is a hodge bodge mechanism of burning files to DVD, rsyncing files to shell accounts which I have at and cross copying files across various machines.

Recently, I decided to simplify all of this by storing data on Amazon S3 and use JungleDisk as the tool to do so.

I didn’t spend a lot of time working out if it would be financially better to run my own backup server versus relying on Amazon S3 inspite of them not offering any SLA so far. I figured that if Amazon ever decides to shutdown S3, there are quite a few people who might be inconvenienced.

Posting this via MarsEdit 2.0. Daniel Jalkut had a great upgrade price and I just jumped on it. A few hours after I purchased, I got a note from him mentioning there might be a problem with the serial number generated for me and asking if there were any issues. There were none.

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Categories: General, Mac OSX

Experiencing AppleCare

August 30, 2007 1 comment

Recently I started having some issues with my 20″ Core 2 Duo iMac. First, my mighty mouse would only scroll up but not scroll down. I cleaned it as best as I could looking up various pages on the Internet which went into considerable details on what one could do to extract dirt without opening up the mouse (it seems impossible to me)

Having failed to coax the mouse to scroll in both directions, I just replaced with a cheap Genius mouse. Borks the white look but hey I can work.

A few days earlier, I couldn’t use my audio line-in port. I’m a heavy user of Skype and nobody could hear me. I switched multiple headsets but nothing would work. The internal microphone worked but it picked up a lot of ambient noise.

So I called into AppleCare, I called a local Hong Kong number and from the accent of the person answering it would seem that it was answered in Singapore. I was quickly registered into Applecare and described both the above problems. I then asked for on-site service and was told that Apple Hong Kong would call me and it would probably be scheduled in a couple of days.

A few hours later, Apple HK called and said they could come an hour later to my house. I was at work at that time and told them to come in the morning the next day. Score one for an uber fast response.

Next day, a technician turns up and pokes around. He determines that he has to replace both the logic board and the mouse. Both of which strangely have to ship out from Singapore even though they are made in China. The technician said he would come again next week.

Overall, very pleased with the experience.

Categories: Mac OSX

This Captcha Seriously Rocks

I came across this link to this captcha today. captcha This seriously rocks though I see user sign up dramatically being lower unless this was a forum for serious Mathematica lovers

Don’t expect to see this on MySpace or Facebook anytime soon. 

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Categories: Humor

Websites with a Flash-only landing page and its impact on an iPhone

July 1, 2007 Comments off

Hong Kong has a number of websites which I would term as “Flash centric”. Whether Flash is truly needed on those sites is something of a personal taste. On the desktop world, its undeniable how ubiquitous Flash is

However, with the recent launch of the iPhone which doesn’t support either Flash or Java. I would personally rethink this option. I know that the iPhone won’t be launched in Asia till 2008 (I’m assuming mid-to-late 2008) but as the recent launch has shown there will be a huge interest in it particularly when Apple gets more applications on to the iPhone via software updates and people learn more about its quirks.

Whilst looking at two websites of fast-food chains today, KFC and Pizza Hut I realised that they were entirely in Flash so if an iPhone user wanted to visit these sites via an available Wi-Fi hotspot they are out of luck. Readers are reminded that the Hong Kong plans to provide free Wi-Fi access in all government facilities including libraries, public enquiry service centres, community halls/centres, parks and Government buildings plus they are lot of free/paid Wi-Fi operators already setup.

Website creators and design houses need to rethink the Flash-only landing page model. The iPhone represents one device which prevents its users from interacting with the property leading to a potential loss of a sale.

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Categories: General, Mac OSX

Postmark is not a mail server benchmark

June 17, 2007 Comments off

I came across Peerapong Kunasirirat’s blog today and also read the same information via the official Sun’s PR blog ‘On the Record’.

Both blogs were discussing how ZFS is great for a mail server workload as benchmarked by Postmark. I have great respect for Sun’s performance team with alumni such as Adrian Cockroft [now with Netflix] and current superstars in their team such as Jim Mauro and Richard McDougall and I think ZFS is an innovative filesystem which eases a lot of pain

Thus it pains me a lot that they are trying to pass of a benchmark (Postmark) which does not have a single fsync(2) as appropiate for a mail server. A mail server has a number of crtical places where it has to do fsync in order to reliably write the message to queue. Failure to do so means that MTA has absolved responsbility.

To me a benchmark which models ISP mail workload correctly is Bruce Guenter’s benchmark . I think Sun should invest in porting this over to the filebench framework. This would command more respect than trying to pass of Postmark as representative of a ‘mail server’

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Categories: Solaris

test with upload

June 5, 2007 Comments off

uploading a picturetaher manzil

Categories: General
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