Archive for December, 2012

Tips & Advices – “How things have changed”

December 20, 2012

I still remember not too long ago I was designated to this ‘special‘ department in this certain company. In this department, there are rules, but for some reason themselves set it loose which the boss permitted – considered the team as one of the specialized elites in the company. I was honored to join them at firstuntil I know them in person.

buildings
I must admit, these guys are smart – but only smart to the extent of what they have been doing and the amount of knowledge that they know from the knowledge base systems (plus some Goggling of course, which everyone can do). Although it seems like they are doing somewhat complicated process, these are repetitive works and can be easily obtained by simple direct processes.

These guys doesn’t seem to accept me much into their family. Observing their nature of workflow and standard operating procedures, I suggested something which could improve their processes, increased productivity and efficiency. I don’t expect much from these people, maybe it will just be ok if they could consider it or I will be more than happy if they go to the extent of thanking me for it. But all I got was a few moment of silence and a burst of laugh (from their leader) echoed by his minions, saying that what I purposed was like a “dream come true” and unrealistic. I tried to be professional but these guys also belittled me.

Seeing that they couldn’t be bothered, I moved over to another department which have equal respect and mutual understanding for each others.

shake-hand-concepts-1

A few years later, I met with one of the ‘neutral‘ team member of this elite team (he was one that goes with the flow – hides amongst the shadows of his leaders and peers – he does not have a shadow himself until lately). I was pretty shocked to see this person at a ‘non-elite‘ area so I went up ahead and ask him “what’s up?“. Looking down and with a sad tone he said that the elite team is no more. I asked him “what happened?” and more importantly “what happened to the rest of them?” – He said everyone had to make a choice whether to leave the company, or to accept a ‘lower than average rank‘ desk job because the account got shut down.

out of business
Well, look how fast things changed – especially for those who are arrogant and think they are the best. I always told my son that

“The more you know, the more humble you will become. Because you realize there are more which you don’t know, and there are a lot more people who knows more than you do”
– neato4u

At the same time, I do feel sorry for them and hope they realize that it is useless to be arrogant and nothing’s wrong with being humble.

Another thing – As I am seeing this same situation happen to almost every friends and family of mine when someone got promoted or stepped up the ladder – their confidence level goes up to a level where they too become arrogant and sadly does not realize that they do not listen to anyone anymore – thinking that they are right – thinking that if they can do it, why can’t others do it to? – thinking that they can do it the hard way, others can too. This is a stage where these people receive their “boosters” in life – it’s like feeling on steroids where you have achieved something that is remarkable in your life – Like you have won a race – some sort of motivational boost – and are very proud of yourself that you see (a trickery that) every other person as useless and no match for you.

I call this “pure rubbish“. If others can do what you can do, you won’t be there in the first place you idiot. It is what others cannot do that made you there – and you can’t blame others for not being as good as you – instead for the gift which God have given, you should help and guide them to be a better person. And thank that they are not as smart as yourself – if not you will be down and drowned there forever with those you now think as stupid and useless (when you were once there – yes, remember you were once there – you could be even more of an idiot then they are now).

So be humble and act kind! – treat others as what you want to be treated. Be a normal human being for God’s sake. Think logically and think of others as well. You never know if your act may cause the wheel to turn – one moment you’re at the top, and suddenly you came down hard.

Sometimes you can’t blame others for it…
for you’re the one who caused it.

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Product Review – Sony Bravia 40″ EX43 LED

December 14, 2012

A few days ago we finally shifted to our new apartment. I have to admit that it was exciting – with new environment and new neighborhood (which friendly neighbors all around). It’s great to know that we have good communities, just like the old ‘kampung‘ days – and I appreciate that this kind of community still exists and glad that I am also part of it – not like some ‘rotten’ modern living where you don’t even see or know who your neighbors are.

So, new place should come with a little bit of new stuffs. And I am delighted to review the Sony Bravia 40″ EX43 LED which we bought recently at Jusco / Aeon during their Aeon Members day for RM1599.

Sony Bravia-40EX43B

Normal retail price for this unit (at this moment of time) is RM1899 / RM1999. But I am sure the price will drop within a few more months if you have missed the offer.

Product Specifications at a glance

Screen size 40″, 16:9 | Full HD 1080p | 1920 x 1080 | 2 HDMI inputs | USB input | USB Play (Video, Music, Photo) (USB viewer supports FAT16, FAT32 and exFAT file systems) | Motionflow XR 100 Hz | Digital Noise and MPEG reduction | 24p true cinema mode | Dolby® Digital | Audio out | FM Radio | Teletext | Picture In Picture (PIP) | Dynamic Backlight Control | Power Saving Mode | Lightweight around 6.9kg with stand.

> Full manual and specs here <

What I personally liked…

First of all is the anti glare screen surface – If you are buying any TV, make sure you have this feature on. Most display units are placed in a very well brightly lit area – with the addition of a bright, slow moving images or videos as their promotional jiggle. These are situations that are not that very common when you bring the unit home – as it was tailored for marketing purposes which purpose is to show off / making it look good / at it’s best behavior.

When you bring the unit home – in a dim light environment, glare can be your number one enemy. Especially when you just bought that expensive floor lamp which your wife has just placed it next to your sofa, facing the TV. Soon you will go nuts when you realize that your TV has just turned into an all expensive mirror!

If you have bought a TV unit which glare (like most Plasma type do) – well, there are still hope – like buying an anti glare screen protector (eg. Sarowin AntiGlare) – but of course, why spend extra money when you can have it all in the first place?

It’s light! The full unit with box weights just around 8kg – I can carry the unit with ease all by myself – walking (probably) half a km to my car, with no sweat.

Then it is the excellent picture quality. When I first assembled and setup the unit – I went through some sample media. And the first thing I opened is the sample images / pictures that was pre-stored in the unit. And my first and only word at that time was ‘Wow‘. That is how good it is which left me speechless.

With 2x HDMI input, connecting my PC (converted to a HTPC) is a painless effort. I did bought a good gold HDMI cable to ensure no jerkiness or pixellated issues. Watching HD content was a pleasure – although some black parts did show some pixel trace – but it could be that I have not setup my PC media player codec or encoder properly.

The unit also supports USB drives and external HDD via it’s USB input. I tested this with my 500GB external HDD and have no issues playing back almost all of my medias with the exception of my own encoded WMV videos which does playback but without audio. Overall I am satisfied with the media capability of this unit. Here are a snapshot of supported formats from the manual :

EX43 LED spec

Update 20/12/2012 : After using the unit for quite some days, I am now convinced that it is a good buy (minus the not like below – which I can tolerate still). The ‘black’ on this unit shows real BLACK, and I truly appreciates that. When viewed side by side with my 20″ Acer LED monitor – the Acer displays a greyish black, while the Sony displays true black like those seen on Plasma.

What I personally do NOT like

Is the terrible sound quality that this unit produces! At some times I was near to it’s maximum volume to really understand what I was listening – by then it’s just too loud when background music and other sound effects are added. Yes there are the sound settings for ‘speech’ but that just made everything else worst. The speakers are directed behind the unit, which made it echoed and lost it’s way to where it supposed to go – to our ears! Setting volume normalization on my PC media player settings helped a bit (there are also normalization and EQ settings built in the unit, FYI), but still I must say that the speakers on this unit is ‘severely below average‘ and that you extremely NEED to get a decent external set of speakers to accommodate your viewing experience.

Would I buy this unit again?

I probably will – if it were to be bundled with a decent set of external speakers at a reasonable price.

Would I recommend this unit to others?

If you are looking for a unit with good picture quality and plan to watch more HD content than SD, and do not mind much about audio quality nor it’s under performing set of built in speakers, and in a budget – then definitely YES.

Cheap PC Games – Get not 1 but 7 original PC games for as low as USD5.70 (RM17.33) or 6 for $1!

December 1, 2012

How about getting an Original Game ‘Saints Row The Third‘ for USD5.70? That’s RM17.33 after conversion from USD to RM. Sounds like the price of pirated games that they sell locally here.

But wait…

How about getting 7 original PC games for USD5.70? Too good to be true? Well if you are a gamer (or just an opportunist, because if you’re a true gamer you’ve would have known about this deal by now.. hehe) or probably subscribers of this blog – if you read this soon enough, you may get yourself 1.. no, my mistake.. 7 of these amazing games at a crazy unbeatable price of (currently) USD5.70.

Too expensive still? (I have no idea how cheapskate you are then.. lol) Then how about 6 games at the price of USD1? – here’s how.

PC Games at crazy price

First, head on to www.humblebundle.com (Don’t worry you can click on this link, it will open a new tab on your browser) and you will be presented with 7 PC Games that are yours to grab by “naming your price”. This includes Darksiders, Metro 2033, Red Faction Armageddon, Company Of Heroes, Company Of Heroes Opposing Fronts, Company Of Heroes Tales Of Valor – and why not (if you pay above the average price) get yourself Saints Row The Third as well?

So is it really USD5.70?

The answer is no. One of my friend bought his bundle for USD5.73 – that’s because the average price was higher back then it is now. If you want to purchase all of them (with the minimum or I’d say the best price you can get) – check out the average pricing under the Saints Row The Third cover.

Saints Row The Third free

At this moment of writing it’s USD5.69 – so if you beat the price by adding another 1 cent (shame? why not? lol) so with USD5.70 you will get those 6 bundled games with Saints Row The Third for free!

Take note that at time of writing, offer ends in another 11 days.

Enough already, I want this now before the offer ends!

To purchase, here is what you need to do – first, visit their website and check the average price (and increase it by whatever amount that you like – it’s going for charity too – if you wish to get Saints Row. Or if Saints Row is not that important to you – you may buy the bundle for as low as USD1)

Then scroll down and choose the predefined or click custom to enter exact amount that you are willing to pay in Section 1.

minimum purchase

Section 2 is optional – you may leave it as it is if you don’t quite understand.
Section 3 is where you enter your email – Once purchased, HumbleBundle will send you an email that contain a link to download soundtracks and generate your gamekey (to download the actual games)

And lastly if you choose to give this as a gift to someone – tick the checkbox in Section 4.

gift

As I bought this for myself – I left that unchecked.

At the most bottom of the page, select your preferred payment method. As I have PayPal – I click on PayPal. However if you do not have a PayPal account – you can still purchase these using your Credit Card (or some debit card that supports these kind of transactions – I know some new Maybank Debit Card have these features)

pay with card

So if you are paying with card – choose the option ‘Don’t have a PayPal account?‘ and just fill in your card details.

Take note that additional conversion charges may apply (not that much, don’t worry – still cheap!)

Once payment is made, you will receive an immediate link to the download soundtracks and page to generate your key (to download the actual games). Bare in mind that the games are downloaded via your Steam account. (If you do not own a Steam account yet – why not create one!)

So that’s it! – It took me a few minutes to purchase, a few days to download all the games (perhaps), and maybe a few months (or years? gasp!) to finish all 7 of these (I’m not a hardcore gamer, I just bought these to show support for the originals and prevent cyber crimes and contributing to some good charities of course! You should too!)

What are you waiting for? The clock is ticking…


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