Considerations When Looking at Video Conferencing Services

7 months ago

Photo Review: LEGO Ghostbusters Ecto-1 (#21108)

1 month ago

Underwater Photography: Rhinopias, Mariona, and Pygmy Seahorse

4 weeks ago

Philippine Farmers: Is the craft dying?

3 weeks ago

Recent posts

Free tickets and a ‘Thank You’ to my readers!

True Faith belting it out. A glimpse of what’s in store on October 20

Some bloggers are giving away tickets for the Toblerone Thank You Day concert at the Mall of Asia. I recently wrote about how October 20 has been declared National Thank You Day, with Manila being the Thank You capital in the Philippines.

I have 300 tickets to the concert this coming October 20 at the Mall of Asia. Bands include (but are not limited to) Cynthia Alexander, Reggae Mistress, Stone Free, Salindiwa, Mozzie and The Dawn!

To claim your free ticket, all you need to do is leave a comment expressing your desire to come. As an added bonus, Toblerone will be giving a special prize to the commenter who posts the most creative way of saying THANK YOU :)

After you have left a comment, you will be contacted by Alma. If you wish to reach her to claim your tickets ahead of time, you may do so by texting her at 09175344624 or emailing thankyoudayphilippines at gmail dot com. See you there!


My guesses on Apple’s UNUSUAL trackpad features!!

Rumor has it that Apple will be unveiling the new line of MacBooks this coming 4Q complete with biometric scanner built into the trackpad. But its not really the thumb signature that intrigues me, but the fine print of the “unusual features” that the new trackpad will contain. Here are some of my guesses:

  • pinching of the trackpad to zoom in and out of the cursor area (the old default command was to scroll with two fingers while holding CTRL)
  • iPod-like circle scrolling for certain applications
  • Flicking the trackpad to scroll quickly through lists
  • reconfiguration of the tapping motion on the track pad to do other things (like zoom a photo to fit to browser)

The new track pad should, by induction, sport some of the innovations of the Apple iPhone touch screen.

Andrian Lee’s “No Scratch” Gadget Solution

Met up with a few of the SEMCON speakers last week for a brief photo session. It was there that I got to see Andrian Lee (he’s going to talk about the Ultimate Checkout Solution on Oct 10) and his uncanny gear protection solution.


Hold your horses! New MacBooks on the horizon!

New MacBook to have two colors, and it's not white!

Just in time for the launch of the new Leopard OS this October, Apple is rumored to also be launching the new generation of MacBook and MacBook Pro portables. Perhaps one of the biggest leaps in MacBook design is the decision to forego the “Apple white” design in favor of black and aluminum. According to The AfterMac, the following changes are rumored to be implemented:


* Black & Silver aluminum
* Slimmer and lighter than current model
* Keyboard that resembles Apple’s new desktop keyboards
* New, larger trackpad with “unusual” features
* Prices will be reduced to compete with the PC laptop market
* Biometric fingerprint reader (May be part of the “unusual trackpad” or will be concealed in the aluminum chassis)
* SuperDrive

MacBook Pro

* New design, Black & Silver aluminum
* Lighter than current model
* New style backlit Apple keyboard
* Larger trackpad with “unusual” features
* Improved battery life
* Biometric fingerprint reader (May be part of the “unusual trackpad” or will be concealed in speakers)
* LED in 17 inch screens
* Core 2 Extreme Mobile (X7900) model with 2.8GHz
* NVIDIA GeForce 8600m GT (256mb on lower model 512mb option on higher)
* SuperDrive & Option for Blu-ray (Single layer)

I’m not too sure what Apple meant by the new keyboard design resembling the new Apple keyboard. Looking closer, it looks more like the new wafer thing keyboards took after the design of the portables. One thing’s for sure though – make your Mac buying decisions after the Leopard launch. :)

Four Tips to Buying a Gadget Bag


As a general rule, buy a bag that’s 10% the cost of what’s inside
Have you ever wondered how much a bag should cost? Well, take the total cost of the gear you plan to put inside and get 10% of that. The formula works for most (read: not all!) cases: my Crumpler Whickey and Cox costs close to P10,000.00 and holds about P100,000 worth of gadgets including my MacBook and camera. A hefty bag price should only mean that your gear fits comfortably inside, likewise both your hands are still free.


In the case of laptop sleeves, a good sleeve should not cost you more than P2,000.00 or $40.00. In fact, one of the best laptop sleeves ever invented retails for only P1,500.00: this is the Zero Shock Laptop Sleeve. You can literally drop a bowling ball on top of the memory foam and your notebook will still function afterwards. *

Yoga helps me deal with curmudgeons on the Internets


Miss Jane introduced me to wanting to do yoga. So one day I decided to become one with the cosmos. Yoga every Wednesday. Leave a comment if you’re interested and we can do the Sun Salutation together.


An Open Letter to Apple

A little bird told me that Apple SG reads my blog. I’m writing this letter to document some of my mental diarrhea in time for the release of the iLife ’09 suite late next year. The letter verbalizes some ideas of combining the UI of GarageBand with some of the features of iMovie ’08, especially fixing the UI for the “paste over playhead” option which is found in iMovie HD.

“The New Order” Ad Congress this November

I’m a little disappointed that this year’s advertising congress isn’t getting a lot of buzz in comparison to the past ones that were held in Baguio and Cebu. I’m not quite sure which agency is sponsoring this year’s ad congress PR — the radio and television, as well as the online beat campaigns don’t seem to be very visible, if at all they are being run.

I have a theory why they aren’t very visible. Just check out their website address:

Oh god. Who can possibly remember that insanely long URL? Ironic as it is, the “New Order” which will be held in Subic this coming November 21 to 24 2007 will touch on such things as new media, social media and emerging trends for advertising. As a guy who’s been in the blog industry for 2 1/2 years, I will be first to say that they should have chosen a friendlier URL.

From what I learned, the “New Order” pitch goes something like this: In the same way that soldiers were sent to Subic for training, so will advertisers and communicators be sent off for different kind of training. Wheee.

So, who’s going to ad congress? :) It would be cool to see new media practitioners and blogtrepreneurs there! If you’re a corporation, it would be a splendid idea to sponsor some interested bloggers and get to know them better.


The “return of the comeback” of Paypal, Darcie is now happy

The life of Darcie, our b5 HQ manager, has been made much easier with the release of full PayPal support in the Philippines. Ever since 2005, b5media has been using Xoom to pay Philippine-based bloggers their monthly income. The service was actually very reliable until two years later – today, where increased earnings and the addition of more bloggers from the Philippines caused the Xoom account to “overload” once in a while. This brought a slight panic to some local bloggers for the most obvious of reasons.

The Xoom payment ceiling was especially tiresome for me as I served as a payment hub for three bloggers. PayPal’s grand return will sure make a lot of people at b5media happy.

Mike Abundo was most poetic about it:

Let that sink in for a second. Rural Filipinos can now sell their towns’ products directly to the world over eBay. Talented Filipina babes can become the next Happy Slip by posting their videos on Revver. The Philippines — indeed, individual Filipinos — can finally earn money in the global Long Tail of ecommerce.

Nope, it’s not April 1. Thank god. This is the real deal.

Offer a novena for my talk today!


Hey, Globe really rebrands everything so quickly. Their new Globe Visibility dongles come armed with the new corporate logos. I had to borrow one for a presentation I’m giving today: well I’ve been fretting all week over this – for the sole reason that the topic is rather obscure. I’ll be talking about “Gadgets and Software for PR practitioners” at today’s Public Relations Society Summit.

It’s actually a breath of fresh air, talking about something that doesn’t have anything to do with blogging. I used to give these talks with the boys at schools and exhibits, and its been months, heck, years, since I’ve been paired with them again – well not all of them, just Adel who’s talking about podcasting and then there’s Mike who’s doing DIY video editing. Annalyn Jusay is talking about blogging today.

Wish me luck. This is one of the more challenging presentations I’ve been assigned to give this year because I want to be more interesting than saying “hey this is a Treo 750, you use it to make phone calls.” Or “This is a laptop, it’s sorta like a PC, but you can put it on your lap.”

I cooked up something fairly interesting. I’ve been pulling out gadgets here and there. Makes me realize that apart from the stuff I already borrowed from tech distributors, I’ve been diagnosed with GAS.

GAS = Gear Acquisition Syndrome.

Wish me luck!


The Transportmers


Now this is just too hilarious (and too amazing) to pass on to anyone who understands the Filipino public commute culture. More photos of the Auto-Toda and Decepti-Toda Transportmers from Kulot.

Thanks, Lauren for the tip.

A Toblerone Thank You via Free Music


Yet another traditional industry – the chocolate industry, to be more specific – has jumped into the online viral marketing bandwagon. Toblerone has collaborated with a selection of local artists to release a torrent friendly album.

This effort is actually part of a campaign to establish Manila as a ‘Thank You’ Capital:


Bloggers on air this Sunday at RockEd Radio


Aren’t we the most self-centered generation ever? We are. We are the most image-conscious, self-important batch of kids ever to walk the planet. Despite world-wide turmoil, we spend hours updating our Facebook profiles; hours putting our opinions and feelings into a blog– as if others care. We spend extra time on what we wear, trying to identify ourselves with brands, bands, movies, even causes. It’s a whole operation, for this generation, this construction of “me”. And, it’s a billion-dollar operation, with the lowly baller ID at its foundation. Jocks, emo kids, valley girls, Northies, Southies, activists, vegans– are all wrapped up in the construction of themselves. Admit it. [Read]”

For those familiar, Gang Badoy and Lourd de Veyra are sitting this one out as Pepe Diokno will be hosting the show. The “oldies” will still be there though. Some bloggers will be joining this podcast including, but not limited to Joey Climaco, Markku Seguerra, Juned Sonido, and Lauren Dado. If you have the ears to spare on a Sunday night, do tune in to NU 107 at 8:00PM. Or better yet, drop by the studio across Robinson’s Galleria (the building with Chef and Brewer) for post event camaraderie 😉

Thanks to Joey for helping organize this.

Undressing the Inspiration of Souls, Descendant of Seneca, That Which is Named Omnipotens, Son and Daughter of Leviathan


My usual “unpacking” routines cannot be used for this particular product. I had to burn a few sticks of incense while the unpacking procedure began.

Ateneo – La Salle Basketball Rivalry on the New York Times

Raphael Bartholomew writes a piece on Philippine basketball culture for the New York Times. He talks about the rivalry between Ateneo and La Salle, the culture of college basketball, game fixing, and the obtuse difference between the players of each school:

Although Ateneo and La Salle have similar upper-class student bodies, their respective basketball teams are very different.

The Ateneo players have a squeaky-clean image. The team’s prize freshman, Kirk Long, came from Faith Academy, a high school in suburban Manila for the children of foreign missionaries. Guard Eric Salamat’s surname means thank you in Tagalog.

La Salle’s players have a menacing swagger, with tattoos, headbands, shaved heads and chin-strap beards. In 2005, La Salle revealed that two of its players had used phony high school equivalency results in their applications, and the team was suspended for the 2006 season. [Read]

So what do you think? Is this article accurate? I’m from neither school so I can’t really say anything. :) The part about the tattoos and squeaky clean image are a bit blunt though.

Bartholomew is a lecturer at the Ateneo.

Older posts
We Recommend
Try this free photo editor to design cool pictures now!
DHgate cheap android tablets