Monthly Archives: March 2003

Geek Speak

The status symbol of a geek; what defines a geek has been defiled. By who? Quake players with a penchant for 1337-5P341<. Well, they invented it anyway.

1337-5P341< does not make you a geek! A geek is identified by superior English strung together with bombastic words that evoke the response, "Speak English please." That, my friends, is a true geek. Not a wannabe who replaces letters with words and go "1337 h4x0R m3 0wnz 411 Y0U12 13453 4123 13310N6 +0 U5!" A geek is not comprehendable already using words you find in the dictionary.

I’m fine with 1337-5P341<; just don't use that as an excuse to glorify yourself as a geek. There were geeks before John Carmack made MDL files commonplace.

It’s time to ask yourself this, people. Are you a geek?

I could quantify the speaker of this supposed sentence as a member of such a class with enough eloquent proof to indicate without any uncertainty that the premise of yours truly being the subject matter is a tautology.

Script Burgers

I was telling Dinesh (unlinked dude whose website is a 404) that I was teaching ASP at KFC. He asked if they were coming up with an ASP burger, to that which we started talking crap. The gist of it were two products:

The Active Server Pages (ASP) burger, championed by Microsoft: It’s not as big as KFC’s XXL burger (heck, the XXL burger is small!) but it gives you a bloated feeling. It’s also full of bugs and makes you feel insecure.

The Hypertext Processor (PHP) burger, championed by all that is free and good, e.g. Linux: It’s smaller but packs a punch with its penguin meat. Of course, being under the GNU General Public License, it means that the burger is given free. The recipe is also available to the public, and anybody who modifies the recipe must share it with the world.

Winging It

Call me a smart aleck without a penchant for books. I was having breakfast with my collegemates when the subject of our previous progress test on catch-up-on-your-sleep theory subject Information Management came up. How did I do? I winged it! (Made up the answers.) Like “tembaking”, just for subjective questions. The test was relatively easy.

They asked how. I related to them that I learnt a bit of it from work. How would you get cheap labour in high quantities? Internships! College leavers who have to go for industrial training! 🙂

At that point I asked if industrial training was covered in Information Management to the remaining breakfast buddy. (The others don’t have my laid-back 5-minute-late attitude.) He went, “huh?” “You know, Information Management? The subject we’re having afterwards? (Or rather, just started…) The boring theory subject? CS219?”

At last he got it. CS219. This was besides the indeniable language barrier between a banana (Chinese who can’t speak Chinese) and a, well, Chinese-educated Chinese. Geez. Everybody refers to subject by their codes! (Which I can’t remember…) I remember last year when referring to our “database” subject. Seems I had to say the magic word, “SQL“. Uhuh.

Another subject we were taking this semester was Java. I had bragged enough of my workplace ASTRO with Xfresh that they duly asked, “Do you use Java at work?” “No.” Well at least I didn’t. It seemed like a cool concept but it was doing enough technical support replying to Xfreshers having trouble accessing the chatroom with their Bill Gates-owned (never mind that they might not have paid anything to Microsoft) Windows XP machines. (I’m not a Linux groupie and I like Windows when it’s nice.)

In my first year I learnt Macromedia Authorware 5. Such a tedious program indeed, that was to be phased out anyway. I’d have preferred they teach Visual Basic 6. At least we didn’t have to learn COBOL like some other assignment-a-week busy college… At that rate I’d say I’m taking my assignment-a-four-month-semester relaxed college for granted. Even at its relaxed pace the lab sounds like a factory with students on dot matrix printers churning trees of slides.

These students have been taught to memorize. It’s a pity. It’s still the same in a private college teaching Information Technology. I’m not even talking about those studious teacher-leech kids. These are people retaking one or two subjects from last year.

It’s sad too that despite their efforts to memorize they get the same B/C/D grades I get!

Mine, at least, takes less effort, just common sense, and when that fails, winging-it skills. God knows how important winging it is. Will you get high in a corporation by winging it or memorizing facts? (Don’t worry, I don’t wing it at work!) I don’t know what Mass. Communication students do but you can bet that winging it does wonders everywhere.

“Why don’t you just study, then?”

I’m lazy. When I do have time to study, books are too tiring. I don’t get the same comfortable posture in front of the interactive idiot box you’re staring at now! 😛

The idea of having to write something and quote somebody from some book [Albert Ng, Glaring Notebook, “Winging It”, 21st March 2003] scares me. Doing anything research-like scares me. Documentation scares me. I lose marks for my short and snappy documentation. (Even with my winging-it skills!)

Heck, talking about studies irritates me too. I’m not one for discussing the technical merits of accolade-ful universities and twinning programs. I know I’m good enough that paper is just something I can fall back on. 😛

Collegemates (actually one) who bug me like I GNU General Public Licensed my Java and C language irritate me like heck. To the point of inspiration – to the point of writing the Parasite Sonnet.

Even in class, I don’t take notes or pay attention to study tips on progress tests. This is even though question spotting is much more accurate in college! My handwriting has gotten worse since work is not 5-fingers-and-a-pen but 104-key goodness. There’s only one thing keeping my writing legible to myself – my poems and sonnets. They were written to keep awake in class!

I’ll end my smart aleck school story here. I’m reaching the end of my third A4-sized paper. Besides, class was just dismissed… 😛

P.S. I’ve fixed a long time bug with the anti-spam-bot mail links. Never noticed till today! :O I’ve also updated my About Me! page with a link to former officemate/frag buddy


What’s the deal with cutting oneself on the arm? I noticed this trend going on lately. I say lately because I didn’t notice it when I was still in school 3 years ago.

What happened to the old methods of getting over depression? Where have the kids been learning this from? I mean, back when people my age were depressed, we did different things. I’d rather be creative. Write depressing poetry or music. Headbang. Go clubbing (and get caught if you’re underaged.) Play Counter-Strike. Get a tattoo. Smoke cigarettes so it hurts your wallet as well. Sniff marker pens, pop pills or drink Dettol, at least you’d go to the hospital and hopefully get enough intravenous tubes to learn something.

Is it because of love?

Lets say this girl who you think is a “fat ugly b***h” comes up to you and says she carved your name on her chest, would you be her boyfriend then?

You’re dating this girl and you carve her name on your hand. When you break up, do you cut off your hand? At least tattoos can be lasered off.

I should fool around, then dump them the next day, and they’d all cut themselves. Silly. If you hate someone, don’t cut yourself! Revenge sounds less stupid.

Sure, I could tell you not to cut yourself. I’ll be kind enough for a suggestion:

If you think you’ll never date another girl again, wax your legs. That way it will hurt, but it will grow back. Until then, you can’t wax it. 🙂

However, if it’s not because of love, I can’t say that self-cutting is totally out. What did kids back then do with school pressure amounting on them?

If you get angry that I’ve insulted your method of getting over depression, fine! Cut yourself and die of rabies tetanus! (Thanks to justine for the correction!) Yeesh.

Playing With The Threshold

threshold.gif, 1108 bytes

Get a creepy bony sulky picture
Copy and paste the shot as a layer
Image, Adjustments, Threshold, make darker
Ignore the lighter parts that disappear
Paste another copy, set its threshold
Set it lighter for more parts to behold
Keep adding lighter layers until told
That this artwork is worth its size in gold
Now the topmost layer is mostly white
Some were cleaned out because they were too bright
Erase layers to bring features to sight
Go down layers till the outline is right
Keep down the file size, it is a safe bet
To save in Graphics Interchange Format


walkabout.gif, 1458 bytes

Sometimes I feel I wanna walk alone
Down with the filthy smelly smoky lanes
Swallow the thrill pill that comes when I’m prone
Go bus hopping and lean on oily panes
The joy of finding a shortcut will beat
The liability of misdirection
If lactic acid should consume my feet
Ride a train out the metropolitan
I don’t need to derail my train of thought
The topic is noone else’s to change
The choice is mine and I will not get shot
Worry not I will stay in mobile range
My destiny Vitamin D OD
I feel accomplished through discovery

Morning Tire

I woke from my slumber to find a low corner
The Perodua Rusa on the side of the driver had a flat tire
So we jacked it higher to remove hubbed rubber but the nuts were tighter
With no grip or power we released it lower

Nuts! Jacking in reverse!
Get the stick to beat up people with, first!
You’d know better than to mess with us.
Yep, my dad was a violent genius.

We tried to replace but we faced a shortened base because this case
Had just as much air so we left it there
A plan was hatched, sounding far fetched
So we took turns to jump on the bicycle pump
We did not measure the internal pressure
But what do you know? Soon it was up and ready to go

Read The Freaking Manual

All this while whenever either my mom’s PC or dad’s PC wanted to print, I’d have to connect their respective network cable into my network card. The printer was connected to my PC anyway, and the 56Kbps modem was also shared with my mom or dad at either time. To save myself the trouble of rolling out the table with the printer (hence loosening the parallel cable) to change RJ45 plugs, I decided to invest in a hub/switch.

Last Saturday I went down with my colleague to the central computer shopping center, Low Yat Plaza. I got myself a cheap (RM105) Lantech 5-port 10/100 Fast Ethernet switch. I later met up with Dinesh and Shaz and well, promptly forgot one glaring thing – cables.

Previously I had two crossover cables that were needed to connect two computers directly. However, connecting to a hub or switch or anything but a computer would need a straight cable! It only hit me at 9 pm as I was having dinner with them.

When I got home I asked my dad what the distance was; he gave it in feet. I was confused. I asked if 20 meters made sense going up one floor and wrapping around the staircase, and he said okay.

Nevermind then, I figured, and I went there again. I discovered this shop chockful of wires, enticed by the various colors. I asked about the shortest cabling (2 meters) and whether crossover cables could be used with switches. They said no, unless the switch was “auto-sensing” or had “auto MDI/auto MDIX”. They asked what brand I had, and I replied Lantech. They said it didn’t have those features, and neither did DLink, a relatively reputable network hardware company.

I then headed over to this big cable-networking looking shop and got myself in-front-of-your-own-eyes crimped 2 meter, 2 meter and 20 meter straight cables. It was cheaper there anyway.

With my bag loaded, I met Dide and another Xfresher, Nazri/technophile, for lunch. I have to thank Dide for the free Quarter-pounder with cheese McValue meal. 🙂 I didn’t see the difference between this and a double cheeseburger though…

Dide and I hopped over to KLCC to collect some long-awaited pictures from KJ/subyo on CD-ROM. We then all went our separate ways. (I have no idea why I am doing this commentary…)

I reached home and my dad asked how long was the cable I bought for his computer. 20 meters, I said, to which he estimated he’d only needed 30 feet. I told him that I wasn’t born when the Imperial measurement system went out in Malaysia! He converted it to 10 meters and he was right! There’s a thick coil near one end of the cable now… 🙁

I later read the thin manual and found the keywords – “autosensing” and “auto MDI/auto MDIX”! It elaborated further saying I could use a crossover cable! This meant that I only needed to buy one cable, whether crossover or straight!

Argh! Next time I’ll read the freaking manual!

I now know that even technically-proficient-sounding salespeople do not know everything.

Oh, and my home network? It’s working fine! Well at least if I get a new switch or router the cables will definitely work! 😛