Firefox 3 is out for testing

Yata! For those Firefox fanboys out there, Mozilla Firefox 3 beta 1 is already available for download. You can get it here. I myself have been a Firefox fan and have been using it since as an alternative for Microsoft’s IE. I like to argue among my friends that Firefox is better than IE in many ways. However when my Firefox 2 started crashing few weeks ago, I started to lose my faith in it. It is then when Flock became my new best friend.

From the Firefox 3 reviews, it is said to be better in terms of speed. The Installation, execution and termination and the uninstall process of the beta is quick compared to the previous Firefox 2. The user interface is improved for simplicity and easier to access. Security is boost up with add-on plugin and it is integrated with anti-virus applications from your system. Other than that, there are also complaints that the Firefox 3 is still weak in memory management. There is still a memory leak which consumes load amount of memory when Firefox 3 is fired up with multiple tabs browsing on rich contents. You can read more Firefox 3 beta 1reviews here.

I did not check out the Firefox beta myself yet since it is only for testing. But I hope by the time the release of the full Firefox 3, it would be much more stable and has better memory management than the previous Firefox 2.

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Play games on Meebo

Now you can play games from a variety of choices offered by Meebo which was launched 2 days ago. Don’t know what Meebo is? Read about Meebo here. Wikipedia’s definiton of Meebo:

Meebo is an in-browser instant messaging program which supports multiple IM services, including Yahoo! Messenger, Windows Live Messenger, Google Talk, AIM, ICQ [1], and Jabber and is based on the free and open source library libpurple created by the software developers of Pidgin[2].

There are games like Backgammon, Blackjack, Checkers, Chess, Go, Pirate War, Reversi, Sudoku Wars and Texas Hold ’em to name a few. The game developers for Meebo are 3rd Sense, Absolutist, AddictingGames, Clearspring Technologies, Come2Play, Gamebrew, MediaGreenhouse, Mochi Media, MyGraffitiWall, Jiggmin, Kongregate, PlayFirst, Presidio Studios, and ZeroCode.

I tried playing a game of Reversi with my bro and it worked out fine. He was using MSN messenger at that time and we were still able to play the game and chat real-time.

With the launching of these games, I think Meebo is moving in the right direction to interactivity and real time action. I can see that Meebo is becoming a popular choice amongst students in my area for IM applications. Students tend to use it in labs other than installed IM like Yahoo IM, MSN and multiprotocol instant messaging application like Trillian and Pidgen.

Good job Meebo!

A weekend get-together

Meeting my Lok Yuk friends had been one of the greatest events since I came back to my hometown. I haven’t met most of my Lok Yuk friends since form 5 which was 6 years ago! Most of us had gone our own ways after SPM. It was Zaidi who proposed the idea that we all should meet up in Center Point on Sunday which was yesterday for a get-together. Those who turned up were me, Zaidi, Annie, Nigel, Ivylenda, Tsang, Loviana, Prisca, Martini and Jamal.

All of us were to meet in Mc Donald’s. We used the time to catch up with each other while waiting for the rest to arrive. When all of us were finally together, we left for a game of bowling. Unfortunately Annie had to leave us for a reason she did not want to speak of. Therefore she did not join us for bowling. It was sad to see her leave so soon but she did stay awhile for the game though. Anyway, we split into 2 teams with 5 on one team and 4 on the other. I think I did the worst on that round. The girls were surprisingly much better than me especially Loviana and Tsang. The game ended with Loviana scoring the highest. She had 3 strikes in a row (which I think was pure luck) which gave her a total 142 points. With that many points, it made me look like an rookie for someone who played bowling before. I wasn’t satisfied so I suggested another round which the rest all agreed. Jamal had to leave for work so we had to play without him. He was actually working on that day but he deliberately skipped work to meet up with us. Anyhow, we started the second round with a person less. That round for me was as bad as the first but I did make some improvement. Loviana from being the best went down the slump to being the worst (well almost the worst). The winner for the second round goes to Zaidi who made a total of 145 points. I wanted to say that I was giving them chance but that would be rude now, wouldn’t it.

After the bowling session, Ivylenda suggested that we have dinner at Tanjung Aru first beach. So we met up there and had our longest dinner ever. We were stranded there for hours due to the heavy rain. Luckily Jamal joined us around the time when we were half way through our meal. He was really good at entertaining us with his stories. Jamal told us his story about his experience with ghost which was half convincing. The part that made it so was the basketball bouncing on its own which was later revealed as a joke. Anyway, the funny thing about the whole story was that Jamal had to beat around the bush just to tell that one particular story. We were all wondering when we will get to hear the climax of the story because he was explaining every single detail of the hunted house. So we had to bare with him for half an hour for the story to finish. However, it was actually good in a way that he made the story suspense and it diverted our attention from waiting for the rain to stop. God bless Jamal.

We reminisce for hours about the good old times in school. We laughed and joked about how we used to be in the best class and how we made fun of each other. I really enjoyed myself last night. Thank you everyone for being there and giving me a great and wonderful day. I wished I had my camera with me. Too bad my dad had lent it to his friend at that time.

I will try and post some pictures here when I have them (one of the girls had a camera with her).

How real is rainbow storage

Sainul AbideenI am sure that some of you have heard about the discovery of a technique for portable data whereby data can be stored on ordinary paper about 2 years ago by an Indian student. If you haven’t, then you can catch up on it here. When I first heard about it, I thought it was a hoax. Storing 450 GB of data on a sheet of paper seems pretty crazy, when a DVD can only store up to 13 GB of data. So I did a little research on it to see how far this new technology claims to be true. It’s time for a little Myth Buster!

The development of this “Rainbow Technology” by an Indian student, Sainul Abideen(pic) was first reported by Arab News and then later the word spread out to other medias on the internet. People who’s interested express their own opinion on the topic which mostly was about whether this technology is true or a fraud.

But following huge interest in the story, Mr Abideen’s claims have come under determined scrutiny across the Internet, with a broad consensus that it is in fact impossible to store that amount of information with the apparatus he has outlined.

Let’s just say if this technology is true, why would anyone want to store that much of data on a piece of paper? Paper can be really fragile. Just a little smudge on it and that’s it, so much for that 450 GB of data. But on the other hand, paper is a small carrier that you can slip virtually into anywhere unnoticed. In another word, portable.

Anyway, the topic were discussed over the internet for quite some time now and it seems that Sainul Abideen’s claim on his development had been misinterpreted by reporters. According to Sainul Abideen, people have mixed up his statement in the newspaper article. You can read more on Sainul Abideen’s clarification here.

From the researcher’s explanation,

Rainbow Storage is not a method to store data on paper but it is a group of techniques to represent data in the form of colour, colour groups and some symbols.

So from the sources that I’ve discovered, storing data on paper is actually possible but not as much as 450 GB of data. But the point of Rainbow technology is not storing data on paper but a technique to store data.

When this technology is ubiquitous in the future, the word Gigabyte would be oblivion in terms of hard disk capacity. Scenario | Enthusiastic and pleased guy: Hey check out my new 100 tera hard disk I just bought. It came with a free 5 tera pendrive | Disappointed and miserable guy: Geez, if I could only find a good excuse to replace my 20 tera hard disk.

Multi touch interface

As we all know, the touch screen is widely implemented in many different applications in today’s technologies. The touch screen uses a single touch interface where it only detects a single movement at a time. The touch pad is a fine example. You can’t use two or more fingers to interact with the touch pad. A multi touch interface can however recognize multiple simultaneous touch points. With the multi touch interface, one can interact with it using multiple fingers and can provide rich interaction through intuitive motion. The video below shows the different things you can do with a multi touch interface.

The multi touch technology is not something new. It goes way back to the 80’s but haven’t been widely used since due to high cost to implement. Today, the technology is already utilized in Apple’s iPhone and Microsoft Surface Computing. We will anticipate more of this technology in phones and computers in the future. By the way, the video above was 1 year ago and there are more where that came from. Check it out out at Ted Talks.

Blogging on your own web space

Using your own web space gives you the flexibility and offers additional options on managing your blog compared to blog hosting sites for instance wordpress.com or blogger.com. Blog hosting sites limit the actions you are able to perform on your blog. It is there simply to provide its users the basic needs to start blogging. But if you want to add widgets or extensions to your blog, it is necessary to get your own web space. Which I did!

You can get a good web space for a reasonable price from many web hosting companies out there. But for me, I do not want to be paying monthly fees to host my blog just yet. Perhaps in the future when my blog gets more readers then I will consider getting my own domain name. For now a free web hosting site would do.

This blog is hosted by Leadhoster which I find quite appropriate so far. It works well with wordpress CMS which I am using at this point. It took me awhile to install the CMS but fortunately I managed to overcome it swiftly. Now that my blog runs on my own web space, I can hunt for wordpress themes from thousands out there. When using wordpress.com to host your blog, you can only get to choose from a limited amount of themes which isn’t really appealing in my opinion. You can find loads of themes from here or here.

Here are simple guides to configure your free webhost to work with the wordpress CMS.

  • Get a CMS for your blog.
    • There are 2 well known CMS used mainly for blogging which is WordPress and Moveable Type. I would recommend using WordPress than Moveable Type. You can get the latest WordPress CMS here.
    • Once you have downloaded the CMS, unzip it to your desktop. You would get a ‘wordpress’ directory after unzipping.
  • Register for a web space.
    • If you are looking for a free webhost, you can search for one here.
    • When you are done searching for the right webhost, go ahead and register for a sub-domain name (you have to pay for domain names, sub-domains are usually free)
  • Edit wp-config-sample.php
    • Open up the file ‘wp-config-sample.php’ in the wordpress directory with a text editor and fill in your database details.
    • Double check if all details are correct then save and rename the file to wp-config.php.
  • Upload ‘wordpress’ directory to your webhost
    • You can upload the files in 2 ways. You can upload the files individually or you can use an ftp client. Download the ftp client here.
    • Once you installed the ftp client, fill in your webhost information in the ftp configuration screen.
    • Once you are connected to your webhost via ftp, start transferring the ‘wordpress’ directory to your webhost directory.
  • Run the ‘install.php’ file
    • Set your webhost root directory to the ‘wordpress’ directory that you have just uploaded.
    • Run the ‘install.php’ file and follow the rest of the instructions.

Remember to change your admin password after the installation. There, we’re done. Yipee… Now you can start blogging like crazy.

Karma and the beast

Hello again people. I have been busy moving my stuff out to my new apartment for the new semester. Next semester only starts after the 10th of November however I want to make things a little easier for myself so that I do not have to carry my stuff to and from the store room. And that explains why I didn’t post for a few days.

Anyway, this week’s been a little dull for me. Mostly everyone has gone back for the holidays. So most of the time I’ll be in my room wondering what to take home and what to leave. I went out the day before yesterday to play MTG with a friend of mine. Did I mention that I am into MTG? Well I do play from time to time when I have nothing else to do. I opened a booster that day and got nothing good. My good friend, Joachim warned me before that I shouldn’t open any booster packets since every booster I opened for the past few months had been a disappointment. I do not know why this is happening to me, buy I am guessing karma is backfiring me. I was into karma at one time until I realize what was coming. I started having bad luck. I loathe you karma! I suppose that would be my last booster for a year!

Other than bad luck harassing me all the time, I did not manage to find anything interesting on the internet or maybe I wasn’t looking hard enough. Other than the news about Firefox 3 will be releasing soon and someone hacking into MySpace page for Alicia Keys, nothing else fascinated me. Oh well, I will keep reading anyway. When I find anything new or mouth gapping, I’ll post it up.