August 16th, 2007

MacBook Pro

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macbookpro1.pngJohnny Malkavin send me an IM this afternoon.

2:27 PM johnnymalkavian: i smell adium
2:28 PM me: ah yes
2:28 PM johnnymalkavian: adium smells… good.

Haha. He is fast :-)

Yes, I just got my new Mac last night after 24 months of Windows. Not just any mac, but the 15″ MacBook Pro 2.4Ghz Dual Core with 256mb GeForce 8600M, upgraded 4Gb Ram and upgraded 7200rpm 200Gb Harddisk.

It is probably as good as it can get. I am happy :-)

In case you are wondering how Johnny knows, Adiumx is the Jabber client I use on Mac. It uses /Adiumx as a Jabber resource and Johnny picks it up from his end.

November 13th, 2006

More FON and giving them away


fon-base-station.JPGSince I blog about FON two week, I got some enquires about whether I could get some for them too. Sadly, as mentioned, they dont shipped to Singapore yet. So a few days ago, I decided to email my friends at FON. Well, they replied and send me a box of 20 FON routers. It just arrived today (thanks :-)

For those who dont know, FON allows you to share your broadband via wireless in exchange for a cut of the revenue (‘bill’ model) or allow you to use others broaband for free (‘linus’ model).

I counted that after giving them to friends and the handful who asked for it, I probably still have 10 left over. So I am giving them away for free* in Singapore or Kuala Lumpur. If you are interested, drop me an email at

* Condition: You pick it up at a place of my choosing. Bloggers will have priority.

Update 14th Nov: I just notice the FON price went up to 30USD. But yes, I am still giving it away since they gave me for free. I still have 5 sets.

November 10th, 2006

Samsung WiBRO Mobile Phone



Just read on Crunch Gear that Samsung is showing off their WiBRO Mobile Phone.

But the one which everyone talking about (and has being waiting for since June) is the one below: Samsung SPH-P9000.


It is really more of a PDA with a fold-out keyboard. Beside the interesting form-factor, it support EV-DO as well as WiBRO* (Tech Spec).

Samsung must be working very hard to make sure they are in the running with the Sprint US$2B WiMAX project. I have no is great for the industry to see someone finally driving the CPE side of WiMAX :-)

* These days, when Samsung talks about WiBRO, it is not certain if they are referring to Korea WiBRO or the (going to be) harmonized WiBRO with Mobile WiMAX.

October 28th, 2006

My little Fonera


fon-base-station.JPGI met Martin in Japan few months ago where he talks about working with Taiwanese manufacturer to make customized base stations for FON. Downloading firmware into WRT54g may be fun for a technie but perhaps not for the masses. So why not make their own boxes? Afterall, you can easily find a manufacturer for US$20-25 (or less depending on the volumne).

Then FON went silent for a few months and then come back with this niffy fonera base station for US$5. So technie see technie do, I ordered one but nooooo…they dont ship to Singapore. :-(

But thanks to some friends in FON and pulling some string, I just got this in the fedex :-) Oh boy, cant wait to plug this in….

October 20th, 2006

Nokia E61


Nokia-E61.JPGMy new toy, Nokia E61, the supposingly Blackberry-killer from Nokia. Got this yesterday and took sometime to play with it :-)

I love the full keyboard. It is actually usable! (and does not take too long to get used to)

I also like the big screen. I feels really good to read email on such big screen.

Aboveall, I love the unlimited data plan. I realised the impedence to use data disappear!

How about pulling all my gmails onto the phone? Why not? Set to auto-retrieve too!

The cool AgileMessager IM client that I wanted to try for a while? Sure, lets play with it. Keep the connection on too!

Or why not use Nokia Podcast to subscribe and download some podcast like The latest show is 12mb? Heck, why not!

Someone once told me that if you want some service to be popular, then just reduce the number of buying decision (not neccessary the price). Pay per use = decision every use vs Unlimited usage = one decision every month. Guess which wins?

October 7th, 2006

Enzer E6068


enzer-E6068.JPG  enzer-E6068-setup.JPG

enzer-E6068-thumbdrive.JPGJust got a new DVD player: Enzer E6068. What so cool about the DVD player is that it comes with a USB port as well as a multi-card reader. You can put in a USB thumbdrive (or an SD card) into the DVD player and it will play the avi :-) Yes, it support DivX too even though it is not stated on the manual. (Actually the manual said nothing about what it can do with the USB…I took a risk and buy it anyway)

“But but..lots of DVD players can do that already”. Yes, but this is retailing at S$99 (~US$60). The other DVD players that comes with USB port is over S$300. The irony is that the thumbdrive I bought is more expensive then the player itself. ;-)

No more burning DivX onto CD before watching it anymore. Ho Ho Ho.

* Enzer is a local Singapore company making very cheap DVD players.

August 4th, 2006

MacOSX on Intel


mac-on-hp.JPG   photo-hp-mac.JPG

A few days ago, I got a few hours spare so I got myself a new Mac…well, kind of. I got Mac OSX running on my HP Pavillion.

Nope, it is not those hacks you do to make your Windows look like a Mac (I did that two years ago). Or the super slow PowerPC Emulator, PearPC.

This is a hack I read a couple of months ago about how to get Mac OSX for Intel to run on non-Apple machine by disabling the TPM checks. I got the patch lying around but never got to trying it until now.

Oh boy, I am surprised how well it goes for me. Almost all the hardware works out of the box, including sound, DVD-RW and even the build in Bluetooth! My ATI Radeon X700 video card has some problem but was quickly fixed with some quick binary hack. The only thing that does not work right now is the Intel 2200BG wireless (wifi) but someone is writing the device driver for that.

I suppose this is the inevitable the moment Apple decided to release Mac OSX on Intel. Despite having TPM that prevent OSX from running on non-Apple hardware, it does not take long for the community to work around it.

True, Mac OSX shipped with fairly limited of hardware support so even if you get it running on a normal PC, it is likely is a lot of your hardware dont work. But since Mac OSX is based on BSD (an open source project), it does not take much to take the open source Linux driver and hack it into BSD/Mac OSX. The few non-open source portion of OSX could also be reversed engineered, given sometime.

I am not going to share how I did this. I probably broke some (Singapore) laws by doing this hack so I am not going to encourage you to do this. Now that I blog about it, I probably should remove the partition and revert that back to Linux. It is a fun thing to do for an afternoon, fun to show it to friends but without the wifi support, it is not exactly usable.

But one day, I hope Apple would releaase their Mac OSX for PC. I know, I know, Apple is a hardware company. But you know, it is a business decision between selling 100M software license vs selling 1M hardware. So never say never. (esp. for those who claims Apple will never release a mouse with more than one button).

May 27th, 2006

Nokia N80


nokia-n80.JPGFinally went to Singtel shop yesterday and upgrade my SIM to a 3G USIM card. At the same time, I also got myself a brand new phone, Nokia N80.

So far, it is like the Series 60 phones that I had before so I am pretty at ease with the interface. Most important of all, the N80 comes with WLAN so I can use my home wireless lan or hotspot. It also comes with the new Nokia Open Source browser. I tried using it with GoogleMail (Mobile) and it works out very well. So far I am impressed.

Transfering contacts was also a breeze with the new transfer tool provided by N80. The apps provided allows me to transfer contact info from my old phone to this one via bluetooth directly. It was amazing…never had I got all my contacts over to a new phone so quickly.

I am going to try some of my staple Series 60 apps I use from Lonelycats, particularly their profimail (a much better email client) and smartmovie (xvid player :-) later today. I dont forsee much problem (except the upgrade in the processor which would help smartmovie a lot :-)

There is only one complain: They changed the power plug for the phone so it is not able to use the standard Nokia charger. They are nice enough to provide one converter but why change it in the first place? They just rendered my 7 chargers I had useless* >.< * Okay, not so useless since my wife still can use it with her Nokia 8800.

** The another phone I wanted is the Nokia E61 but they dont have it then.

January 17th, 2006

HP Pavilion DV4000 and Dopod 900



Yes, I switched back to the darkside again a few weeks ago. No, I haven’t give up on my Macs but playing WoW on Powerbook for the last few months, the conclusion is: Sorry, it just didnt cut it. So alas, time to went shopping for a notebook with enough juice.

Sad to say, none of those ultra-portable notebooks from Sony, Sharp, etc have any interesting 3D card. The smallest notebook I can find that has any decent 3G is Acer Aspire 5500 that comes with ATI Raedon X700, 128mb VRAM and 14.1″ widescreen and weights 2.5kg. But for the same price, I could get HP Pavillion DV4000 that comes with ATI Raedon X700, 256mb VRAM and 15.4″ widescreen and weights 2.9kg. In the end, I decided that the 400g isn’t a big difference and so I got my first HP computer. And so far, I have nothing but praise for it. Lovely machine!

Then, a week after, Acer launched their dual core notebook Aspire 5670 which comes with X14000 and 512mb hypermemory1 retailed at the same price. And Apple launched their dual core Intel-based MacBook Pro that comes X16000! :-(

dopod900.JPGSpeaking of gadget, I got to play with Dopod 900 over the weekend. Not many people heard of Dopod but their phones has been sold under various OEM brands. For example, Dopod 818 is more well-known as O2 XDA mini.

Anyway, Dopod 900 has a form factor like my Sharp Zaurus C760, a clam-shell which opens up a full keyboard and a twirling screen! Its a 3G phone with 640×480 screen and comes with build-in Wifi and a 1.3mpg camera. The specs alone makes me drool…Promising device because it could potentially replace my phone and the zaurus I carry around. I could even overcome the fact it runs Windows Mobile and not the more hackable Linux.

But sadly, Dopod 900 didn’t meet my expection at all. Selling at nearly US$1,000, you will expect to have a nice finishing either like an iPod or at least Dopod 818. Instead, you get this cheapo looking grey plastic cover… I guess design is a secondary problem as the main problem is the CPU. Every keypress has a noticable delay of 500ms or more. So even simple thing like dialing to make a call is a tedious process of pressing one number, wait, then press another number, wait… I gave up playing with it after a while…didnt even try to see if I can do any SIP calls with it *sigh*

A very promising device, with a form factor I really like, but I guess I will have to wait for the next version tho. Hopefully they will fix these problems by then.

1 I was told ATI Raedon X14000 performs actually only like an X600 where as Apple X16000 is closer to X700.

June 20th, 2005

Logitech MX1000


MX1000.jpgThanks to a friend1 who gave me a Razer Viper last year, my wife is so used to the 1000dpi high precision mouse that she cannot stand any normal optical mouse anymore.

So when I was shopping for a new mouse two weeks ago, she warned me ‘nothing less then 800dpi’. Now, when your wife talks to you about mouse dpi, you better listen cos this is not something you expect from a non-geek. Heck, even geeks don’t talk about the dpi of their mouse.

I was really tempted by the Razor Diamond, 1600dpi mouse but I hesitated because I don’t want my wife to come back next year to tell me ‘nothing less then 1600dpi’. That would be so wrong. Beside, I was also looking for a wireless mouse so Razor Diamond was out.

Anyway, to cut the whole story short, I settled on the latest Logitech MX1000, the world first laser mouse with 20x more sensitivity. Although only 800dpi, it is really really smooth compared to other 800dpi mouse. After using it for World of Warcraft for more then a week, I can vouch for it. And I really love it.

As for my wife, she still stick to the old Razer Her complain? “Too heavy” :P

1 Actually my friend owns Razer (the company). Sorry. I promise the next mouse I buy will be a Razor.