Friday, March 20, 2015

Too Many Things To Do

There is a classic reason why I have not updated this blog, busy. Yes, I've been too busy with many things. No, really, I am not trying to make excuses. I am truly, really, busy.

Sometimes, I wonder why other people seem to be relaxed. Nothing to do. But, then again I could be wrong. They might be busier than I am. Although, I doubt that. I know that there are people who are as busy as I am, and some are busier, but most people have simple things to do.

Being busy is a choice. I cannot blame others but myself for being too busy. So, I guess, I should enjoy being busy. This is a good problem.

Meanwhile, I should find time to blog again.

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

What to do with spammers (and backlinkers)?

I hate it when people comment on my blog, but they don't actually want to comment. What they want to do is to put their link(s) into the comment so that they generate traffic and backlink to their site. It's one of those SEO thingy. Yes, I notice some of you are doing this in this blog.

One thing I notice is that they don't actually read the posting (article). They just post their comments blindly. I suspect, some of them are also using some sort of tools to do it. Thus, it doesn't matter if I say this bluntly or not. They'll never read it anyway. If you do read this post, don't put comments unless you mean it.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Photoscape 3.7 Under Wine (Linuxmint)

Just tested Photoscape 3.7 under Wine under Linuxmint 17. Looked okay, but then when I edited an image ... preview of all images became broken greyscale. It looked like this:

Don't know where to report. Posted here for the benefit of others. Any fix(es) out there?

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Running Out of Google Storage

I've been using Google mail (gmail) for years. Obviously, I use picasa also to store my photos. Currently, I am having a problem with my (mostly email) accounts. It almost reaches the 15 GB limit.

I use my gmail as my main communication media. Students sending assignments are kept in my mailboxes. Every semester I have betweet 30 to 100 students and I've been teaching more than 15 years. The storage is definitely becoming a problem. What bugs me is that I have only 8000 (or so) mails in my mailbox and that has reached the maximum free storage capacity.

What to do? Delete emails? Or, should I upgrade the free account to the paid one?

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Lost in the emails

I have too many emails. Hundreds of emails daily. That's not counting spam mails. It's not that I think I am important. It's just that I've been using emails for too long. Since late 1987 or 1988, I think.

The problem is that most mail readers currently cannot handle this situation. I ended up with cases of lost emails. Somebody sent me an email and I did not reply right away because there was more pressing email(s) to reply. Then, I forgot to reply. Communication went dead. S/he thought that I did not want to respond, when the actual thing is that I could not find her/his email.

I often ask people to send me email again if I do not respond to the email in a certain period of time, say in a week. Most people think that the request is strange. No. I don't mind people send me multiple emails. Just to remind me that I have not responded to the email. Send me again ...

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Laws on buying and reading books

Everytime I go to a bookstore, I bring book(s) out of the store. My wallet suffers a bit. That's not my main worry. My main concern is I keep on piling books. My to read list is getting longer and longer ... and longer.

I think this is my new law (BR's law on books):

the speed of buying books > the speed of reading books

Ugh ...
I think I am not the only one.

Saturday, November 08, 2014

Tech Gadgets ARE social devices

Looking at various sites / blogs / forums, I read complaints that smartphones and all those tech gadgets are anti-social. Hmm ... This is ALL WRONG.

If you look closely, at the other end - and also using smartphones - are people. Not wall or dead objects. Human. They are socializing through smartphones. It's just that most people see they are talking to the device. No! They are communicating with another person (or persons) on the other side. The device is just, well, a device.

Now, have a look at those people who are travelling and reading books. Alone. By themselves. They are not talking to other people. So, who are the anti social?

Friday, October 24, 2014


kenapa ya kok kita sibuuukkk ingin tahu kabinet?
ini hanya sekedar untuk menunjukkan betapa hausnya kita akan informasi.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Mark Zuckerberg is in Indonesia

Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook (as if you need this introduction - ha ha ha), is Indonesia. He met with our next president, Joko Widodo - famously called Jokowi, in Jakarta. Joko Widodo will be sworn as our president on Oct 20th.

One of the photos that made me laugh (happy laugh) is this. In this picture, Jokowi showed Mark some kind of pants (I think it's a pair of jeans) from a small store in Tanah Abang. Jokowi was known for cleaning the mess in Tanah Abang. He loves to go to small places and meets with ordinary people. We call this "blusukan" (pronounce like: blue shoeq un - ha ha ha) in Javanese.

Oh, btw, we make jeans in Indonesia. Those famous brands are made in Indonesia.

Mark went to Yogyakarta before he went to Jakarta. Yogyakarta - or Jogja in short - is famous for Borobudur temple. Another photos that made me laugh is this. A group of tourists, not knowing who Mark Zuckerberg is, asked him to take a picture of them and he took the picture. Mark is just a nice guy. Here's the photo.

Mark Zuckerberg is in Jakarta as part of

Anyway, he should have come to Bandung. I'll give him a tour of Bandung (and Tangkuban Perahu crater). We can also talk about many things, like internet governance here in Indonesia. Having ran the .ID domain for a long time and being involved with many internet initiatives I can share my view on those issues. I can also tell him that Facebook is declining in Indonesia and that he should plan to do something about it. (FB has changed Indonesian social behavior.) He doesn't have to believe me, but speaking from experience I am not BSing. Next time? (Or is it going to be too late - facebook bites the dust like friendster.)

Anyway, have fun while you're in Indonesia, Mark. Enjoy the trip. Stay healthy.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

The Fault of Being a Star

once upon a time
there was a star
who wished to become a nobody

worry he shan't
as fading away he is

wishes granted
... a nobody ... he is ...

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Android Should Not Sync By Default

One of the problems I have with Android phones is that by default (?) the configuration is trying to sync the phone with my Google account. For my case, it tries to download (sync) my emails (gmails) and photos I uploaded to picasa. This is a disaster since I have lots - say more than 10,000 emails - and Gigabytes of photos.

I found out about this a while ago when I tried a new Android phone. I noticed that there were some networking activities. Apparently, it tried to sync my photos. I think it did that when I am connected to WiFi, but not when I am connected with 3G. Had it also done the same thing using my 3G connection, my quota would be long gone. (Long time ago, I had similar problems but could not recall what.)

Some people love the idea of synchronizing contacts on the Android phone with their gmail accounts. I don't. If I do that, than thousands of my contacts would be on my phone. Searching for a contact in my phone would be a nightmare.

Other than taking my networking quota, I am also worried about privacy. What if I lost my phone? The person who found the phone could read my emails and downloaded my photos. Scary.

I think, by deafult Android should not sync data with Google accounts. Another option would be to create a dummy Google account for my phones. This is under my control. I should do this, then.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Mafia Fried Rice

A couple weeks ago, friends came to Bandung and asked me what's new in Bandung. They were looking for something to eat. My answer was ... "Mafia Fried Rice" (Nasi Goreng Mafia).

Where can you get it? Krang Kring cafe is one of them.

To be frankly, I haven't had a chance to test it myself. I heard it is spicy. Well, my stomach is very sensitive to spicy food. Ugh. So there is a chance that I may not be able to taste it. I know some people, including my nice, who always ask for "nasi goreng mafia" if we ask them what to bring home. Next time, I'll find it and take a picture :)

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

New Food Buzz in Bandung

Bandung is a food barometer in Indonesia. Well, not just food, but also fashion. This post is the food side. Next time, I'll post the fashion side. I am so glad that I live in this city.

The new food buzz in Bandung is Bon Chon. This is a Korean-franchised fast food. It's the Korean KFC, sort of. Their favorite menu is the honey-glazed chicken. It's sweet and a little better compared to KFC, in my opinion of course. The rest is similar to KFC.

The place is always packed with people. It's just a wave. Let see how long this will last. In the mean time, let me enjoy these drumsticks.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Taxi in Bandung's Train Station

Just got back from Singapore. We flew from Singapore to Jakarta and went back to Bandung using train. The Argo Parahyangan train was okay. Lots of tourists were on the train.

Arrived in Bandung, we decided to take taxi to our home. It has been a while since I took taxi from this train station. I didn't know what to do. So, when we were just off the gate, we were swarmed by unofficial taxi drivers. I knew I shouldn't say something and just straight to metered taxi, which I remembered there were plenty of them on the street outside the train station. But, I responded. Boy, I was so wrong.

The taxi drivers offered me their service. I asked them how much. They asked where to and I said the area where we live. They offered Rp. 150,000,- (one hundred fifty thousands rupiah). I knew this is too much. I remembered taking taxi from Bandung airport to our home is just Rp. 70,000. So I told them that. They grunted and started to walk away, except for one guy. He relented that we should take his service. I knew that with metered taxi, it should be Rp 50,000. But, I decided to take this taxi anyway. Just to give it a try. So we paid Rp 70,000 (plus I added Rp. 10,000 just because I felt sorry for him).

So there you go. Next time, I would just keep quiet and look for metered taxi.

Refocus. Remembering rai·son d'ê·tre

This blog has been distracted for a while. At one point I have not touched this blog for quite a while because I have another blog to maintain. But, then I remember the purpuse of this blog; to share my knowledge about Indonesia (for those who are far away from Indonesia).

I was away from Indonesia for quite a while. At that time, late 80s early 90s, there was no World Wide Web. Email was also limited. It was difficult for me to find information about Indonesia. Nowadays, internet is everywhere. But, in my opinion, it is still difficult to find information (about Indonesia) through the eyes of Western culture. Thus, this purpose of this blog. Raison d'ê·tre.

The thing that reminded me of this is that my family just got back from Singapore and had to go to Jakarta before going back to Bandung. So,  we had to search for information about hotels in Singapore and Jakarta. Apparently, the number of good information out there is still limited. Perhaps it's because ordinary people like me do not contribute with good information. Come one wisdom of the crowds.

If I got distracted, please remind me again. I need to remind myself. ha!