Everything and Nothing

Friday, September 27, 2002

One Big Shite

I empathize with Rowie for having crossed The Establishment when it comes to the UAAP games. I made this comment:

Well the way I see it, the UAAP is a sacred cow and school pride is like a cult, especially with the types that Richie Ramos described at ateneogenx. I guess some folks like you and me (who cares nothing for UAAP) have become more egalitarian and don't fit in the mold of the "old skool" Atenistas.

The reference to Richie Ramos (of Indiefilipino) is in his comments posted to the ateneogenx group:

Though I am by nature quiet on this list (I feel no need to actually write a lot on this ML for one reason or the other), what all of you have said rings true in my own mind.

What is it about, this Ateneo-Lasalle conflict? As a man (forget the word Atenean) who has friends from all schools, I have always found it verging on the point of childishness. Once you get to the big world out there, it doesn't really matter - unless you subscribe to the old-boy network of getting a job via connections in the alumni.

I have actually avoided the whole UAAP thing, simply because even in my time, I felt uncomfortable with the fact that Ateneans could actually hate another school so much - and don't tell me it's just in the name of fun, unless fun involves indiscriminate bashing.

After what I've read, I am all the more happy that I purposefully ignored watching the latest game. And by the way, it IS disturbing to see Ateneans who feel that the world owes them a lot, simply because they are Ateneans - that they have some sort of Grand Destiny because of that.

Ah let's face it, the UAAP and the Alumni Network are big bucks.

Thursday, September 26, 2002

Today's meeting for PH-CERT was long and promising. We, the board, set the direction of things to come. Watch out for our announcement and projects.

There are so many comments on today's UAAP (athletics) finals basketball game between arch-rivals Ateneo and La Salle. I'm from Ateneo, but I'm apathetic when it comes to basketball, and sports in general. I can't point out why but sports just bore me. I agree with Rowie on her points about being lax with varsity players, and a much-discussed incident at the game.

Here are pics from the shoot of Wasted, the Movie. Recognize someone there? That's Budjette Tan of Alamat Comics, but he's more well known to the public as the print ad promoter for the MMS Roaming of actress and VJ Donita Rose.

Wednesday, September 25, 2002

I'm starting to read O'Reilly's Programming C# 2nd Edition, and using Mono to run the examples. I'll see how far Mono goes before having to switch to Windows XP + .NET SDK. I hope Mono is sufficient to learn the language and core classes. I really feel crippled coding under Windows.

I'll probably spend less time in Windows since I've finished the Warcraft story. Yay!

I still have a list of things to study in Java. In the crypto department, this includes JSSE and SASL. In the network department, this includes java.nio. One of my goals is to write a network server using java.nio but there's no practical use yet. I'd like to write a Pure Java RADIUS server but that task is too big for me alone.

I'm figuring out how to get the Java ClassLoader to load a class from a file then make it an implementation of an interface. This is related to the project I suggested to the thesis group, and something good to know as well.

Tuesday, September 24, 2002

I am interviewed for my ideas on the local ICT industry for
the 18th annniversary issue of Metropolitan Computer Times. I am cited as one of their "18 Movers and Shakers."

They called me "a grizzled IT veteran at a relatively young age of 28, Migs." Well yes, I am literally grizzled now. Young? Yes, compared to the other people they named. I often feel old relative to my peers. It's always great to be written about, but it's a challenge to do more!

I haven't been doing much in the past few days.
I've been playing Warcraft - almost done with the missions. I hope to be ready for work tomorrow! Piling up, piling up.

Almost no coding or tech stuff over the past few, until today. I tried something to practice Java class loading, based on a question posted on PEx. It was too complex for the Java learners' list, though. I hope to get some discussion rolling there.

The thesis group I'm helping has come up with a great idea for the JXTA project. I'll share it when it's ready for public scrutiny.

Sunday, September 22, 2002

There is local Infotech blog, run by the folks at DigitalFilipino. My project in planning, in comparison, is less about tech things, and more about tech people and the scene.

I'm now checking if Grey Matter will fit. (And I'm resisting the urge to write my own, which will take some time, for sure!)

Saturday, September 21, 2002

I'm feeling better - not totally well, but well enough to want to get out of the house, later.

I saw Conspiracy Theory on Studio 23 last night. I liked it! I watch less films and TV than the average person, which I credit to a short attention span.

The project for JSO and JSSE is clear to me - to make SSL Sockets accept connections that are not authenticated. This is for Jabber server operators who use self-signed certificates with their own Certificate Authority.

I wrote a Python script to analyze Apache common logs, report on referrers, and decode Google search URL's.
I haven't been hacking on Python, so I needed some practice.

Friday, September 20, 2002

Happy (?) 30th Anniversary to the declaration of Martial Law in the Philippines.

I am a "Martial Law Baby" since I was born in 1974.

I missed the PEx Business Club and Developers' Night meeting. Next time.

I've been playing too much Warcraft, so much that I couldn't sleep properly with the games playing in my dreams. At least it works great on my humble new system (Duron 1.1 Ghz + a borrowed TNT2 32 MB).

So today, I gave it a rest. I spent most of my day out of bed chatting with friends and getting help with my problems, PEx, and plain surfing. I managed to restart my programming - "restart" since I haven't felt like doing tech stuff for a few days. I read some JSSE docs and got started on some trial coding.

From PEx, I learned about Anino Entertainment, which is creating a game called "Anito." (For the non-Tagalog readers, "anino" means "shadow" and "anito" is a spirit). It's described as a 3D adventure game in an Asian setting. Check their site for the fully story.

I saw Jenny Jamora again on Juice TV, talking about acting and teaching acting to kids ("What's Your Juice?"). I want to know more about her... Such a coincidence, I only got to watch TV since I'm stuck at home, and I found the Juice website linked from some place. I just signed up at their messageboard/forum.

I signed up for Blogtree after seeing it mentioned at my blogmom Pammy's page. Will I get to meet my "siblings" quarter life crisis and disordered intellect... ? Check my Blogtree page.

Which reminds me, people with much newer blogs than mine manage to decorate theirs much better. Someday...

Wednesday, September 18, 2002

Nothing much has been happening. I am having one of the worst attacks of flu I ever. I should be doing some stuff while I'm at home, but I just don't feel like it.

Monday, September 16, 2002

Dominique Cimafranca, who does open source advocacy for IBM Philippines, posted an analysis of Microsoft's attack on local open source. He summed up the attack as:

Premise: Commercial software is responsible for creating millions of jobs

Premise: Open source software is not commercial software

Conclusion: Open source software will stop the growth of the local software industry

Read more from his site or from INQ7.

Another prepaid card provider bites the dust. Word from PEx is that Globe is offering its own dialup prepaid card. If it would be like the trial accounts offered in PEx, then it would be a "premium" service - that is, you get the full modem speed.

I won't be a customer of Globe for DSL since they have confirmed that they are not serving my area.

I got JSO and its example to work with Netbeans. The IDE is easy to figure out even if I skipped reading the O'Reilly draft. I can now go into the depths of JSO and work on completing it.

Aya Medel may have an iMac, but I can't afford one yet. The only reason I see to get one is to integrate MS Office into BSD Unix.

Sunday, September 15, 2002

Not much tech for the weekend. Was tweaking my new home PC, which is for my development, and for my brother's school work and games. Remaining tweaks are to get the VIA 8233 AC97 sound system working under Linux, and speeding up the hard disk system to UDMA 100 or 133.
Still running on a borrowed 14" monitor and TNT2 video card.

I'm getting started with NetBeans. I can now use Java IDE's, now that I have 256 MB RAM. They are a pain with 128. I am reading the draft of the O'Reilly book.

Cryptix SASL isn't too fun to work on. The Cryptix JCE (Java Cryptography Extension) reports that HMac_MD5 is not supported.
The source is not easy to debug, to find out why the cipher is not available. I'll get back to it since SASL is important and it is good to know the JCE from the inside.

Thanks to the PH-Cyberview group, we are updated on the whereabouts of Miguel "Migs" Dimayuga. He has entered the Jesuit Novitiate at the New Orleans province. He was one of the first ISP techies, being a founding crew member of SKY Internet. He was previously with a number of US ISP's, and is the first Pinoy to present at NANOG (North American Network Operators Group) in June 2000.

Another Pinoy - an anomymous one - was able to scam $3 from the scamming folks from Africa. Pinoy ingenuity? It's funny, anyhow.

Friday, September 13, 2002

I'm trying out SASL (Simple Authentication and Security Layer) using Cryptix SASL. While many projects out there use this, I'm learning it for use in JSO.

You know you've been blogging a while when... your friends cite you as a reason for them getting started! Welcome Monica!

Thursday, September 12, 2002

I envy Ritchie Lozada. He has more than 1 Gigabit per second of bandwidth in his office.

Peer to peer networks on your cell phones? If that works, it could be useful for the Philippines where mobile handsets vastly outnumber PC's.

I have almost forgot giving this interview at ITnetcentral. Thanks to Jason Banico for reminding me.

Wednesday, September 11, 2002

I skipped the Open Minds press conference yesterday since I'm retired from Linux advocacy. The press covered the meeting here (Businessworld) and here (INQ7).

Tuesday, September 10, 2002

Congratulations to the newly elected board of PH-CERT! We held a very entertaining meeting at the ACCEED facility of the Asian Institute of Management. Thanks to Computer Associates Philippines for sponsoring the meeting.

I am part of the newly-elected 9-person team. We'll be having another meeting to choose the officers. I'm looking forward to some useful projects and learning experiences. The end of the meeting brought us some mad ideas on fund-raising, marketing and promotions.

At work, I'm getting into object design. I found some good stuff in the form of an object design workshop course outline. My experiences with complexity are addressed with Perfection and Simplicity.

Monday, September 09, 2002

I got some advice on debugging JSO, but I couldn't do it today. The maintainer would like some help implementing SSL and SASL, and I'd like to give that a shot once I get the hang of running the JSO example. I would also like to help in the Jabber component support since my main use for JSO is to implement gateways between the Jabber protocol and other types of socket stuff.

pinoyjavalearners now has 15 members, and the discussion is starting.

I want to do java.nio! Here's a new article on non-blocking sockets and the new O'Reilly book.

Wouldn't it be nice to have a local Emerging Technology group that meets face to face? Here's the announcement of the one based in Palo Alto. Once we get the tech scene stirred up, such events will easily follow.

Microsoft is pulling our collective leg again. After speaking out against open source, the president of Microsoft for the Asia-Pacific stated:

FOR the local software industry to flourish, innovation and entrepreneurship must be instilled in the minds of the country’s software developers.

“Software [development] is all about the capability of the human brain,” said Michael Rawding, Microsoft’s president for the Asia-Pacific region including Japan, during a meeting with IT and business journalists last week. “It is about human capital, and not about having the best infrastructure. I believe this is a great opportunity that the Philippines should take advantage of.”

Rawding believes that if Filipino software developers are given the basic tools, a lot of education — and a lot of encouragement — amazing things will happen.

Of course he has to mention their role:

He also believes that solutions and platform providers such as Microsoft play a critical role in fueling the software industry. “Our business model is that we provide the tools to the partners who develop the solutions,” said Rawding. “This is a win-win situation. It is a win for the developers who create innovative solutions, a win for the customers who benefit from the innovation, and a win for technology companies such as ourselves who are providing the tools and training.”

Sounds like a job for Ritchie Lozada, who prior to working for Microsoft Philippines, developed under Linux. Twists of fate. The mention of the Bayanihan Computing project was a good thing.

Sunday, September 08, 2002

My Java education project has started with the pinoyjavalearners Yahoo! group. My initial description:

A forum and study group for learning and peer teaching of the fundamentals of the Java programming language. We encourage free-flowing discussion, and the only bad questions are those that remain unanswered.

I have invited friends who want to get started. I look forward to developing my Java teaching skills, and get a firm grasp of the fundamentals. This is peer teaching, anyway - I cannot claim to be a language expert. I have been using Java for only around six months.

On open source programming as art: I found a Slashdot discussion from 1999, and the article it makes use of.

I have resumed studying the JSO (Jabber Stream Objects) project. I generally understand the example code for the library, but it fails to authenticate against the Jabber server. I've started debugging it but hit a snag.

While giving the security training, I found that the Honeynet project has a challenge for beginners, involving the analysis of port scans. I haven't dived into packet forensics, but I know I have to learn at least the basics to be serious about security.

My project manager gave me a heads-up that our commercial project will be intense this week. While I'm looking for more adrenaline than often-lazy training, we all have to remember that stress kills!

I am no longer a pressure worker. I used to be back in the ISP days, but I grew tired of it. But it's a living, and consulting work pays the bills, so to speak.

I also like to sleep long - at least eight hours a night. That means, no going out during weeknights during heavy work days. I hope it's not heavy enough to stop me from attending the Tumble Dry Tour on Wednesday. At least I have quit working weekends, except for reading and leisurely hacking. I should make it to the event of Inquirer 2bU this Saturday.

I'm sorry if I'm mixing tech and non-tech here, but the techscene project has not yet started up. When that happens, you can find all the tech stuff over there, leaving this journal to my personal ramblings.

I also need a way to easily update and publish my public to-do list for you guys to see - and remind me if I'm slacking off about something!
First on the list is to put up a links and comments page.

Finally, congratulations to Arnold Arre and Cynthia Bauzon for the soft launch/book signing of After Eden at the Book Fair. I may have missed it last night, but I'll make sure I go to the formal launch!

Saturday, September 07, 2002

Today was the day of the arts. I went to the shoot at Brash Young Cinema for its upcoming TV show. Guests were indie film director Quark Henares, who reached mainstream recognition with "Gamitan"; Michi Valeriano of MyX, the music channel of ABS-CBN Broadcasting; and Lyndon Gregorio, creator of the Beerkada comic strip and book anthology.

We were all laughing hard as Joey Fernandez, the driving force behind Brash, was a riot behind the cameras as he brought out the laughingly best behavior out of his guests. I went alone but was able to meet Joey's friends whom I have only previously read on their blogs. This project will be an artistic success. Commercial success would depend on the attitudes of the business people behind the broadcast networks, and the interest level of the audience.

I had already met Joey late last year, the one time I saw a film there. Now, I am hardly a film enthusiast, and I find that I hardly have the interest in watching them. But I greatly admire the people who work on them, and the independent filmmakers the most.

Later in the afternoon I went back to the Book Fair, picked up After Eden, and met with friends. Unfortunately I failed to have by copy signed. I'll wait for the grand launching.

I started to read it, and it's... senti.

Thursday, September 05, 2002

If there was ever a local techie comics scene person, it's Jason Banico, now with Yehey!.

I just found out that he's blogging about his work on a new comics company, Dynatica.

While I like his series, "Baylans: Hack the Culture," I think that no one else I showed my copies to could relate to it!

In my free time I'm studying some Java basics like Collections. This is to prepare for the upcoming basic training sessions I'm thinking about, a foundation for future fields of study, and maybe for SCJP Certification.

I don't feel like taking up J2EE anymore. I really feel no affinity towards it. Now, why did I think I would ever be interested in business software? I never was. I'll still be looking at the underlying network and related parts, though.

Microsoft takes its anti-open source campaign to the Philippines and the local community is not taking it sitting down. I'm not too interested in advocacy myself - I'd rather write the code and build the knowledge infrastructure for open source. The C# books at the Book Fair were tempting me though...

Monday, September 02, 2002

I got busy with IP network security training. As with the past two full-week sessions, I learn different things and new approaches.

I've been reading at O'Reilly about Sun, J2EE Open Source, and whether EJB's are good at all. It's good that at this stage I can still be critical since I'm not involved yet. I still have a bit of basic Java to master, namely threads and the collections framework.

Sunday, September 01, 2002

Not only is the project intense, but something is bothering me. Something I can't talk about here - yet. It's making me lose my drive, and could even lead to depression.

I haven't been able to read the PDF pile. Normally, I hate procrastinating, but when you know your brain is not in a receptive mood, might as well put it off for a more productive time.

I better get the tech blog up and running so others can share in the content and build something that followers of the local tech scene can visit.

Before that goes up, I might as well put the personal entries in here and shift the content towards that. I've been holding back on that for too long.

Over the weekend, I finished the Yuri's Revenge Allied mission, which I put on hold for months. I also played the Warcraft 3 mission and am currently at Undead #5. I am not what you would normally call a "gamer," since I'd rather do more productive things - or waste time on the net. But it's OK once in a while.

The only tech development is that I'm getting more involved working with Oracle. I used to look at database management - and any business programming - with distaste. However, it's important for career survival. I'm looking into learning at least the working basics.

I visited the Philippine Book Fair today and didn't see anything extraordinary. I noted some tech books that I might want to take in the future, but nothing about Refactoring or Patterns that I need right now. The Software Engineering texts I saw were boring. I did see the new graphic novel of Arnold Arre, which I will go back to buy. I believe it's the first such book, under the Anino ("shadow") imprint of Adarna House Publishing.

The PEx Book Club is planning to meet next Saturday at the Book Club, for the second anniversary. I'm one of the founding members, even if I hardly read fiction. In fact, I joined the club to "force" me to read fiction that I otherwise wouldn't touch. I have been reading some novels lying around the house, though, since I've finished all the non-fiction there is to read. Budget permitting, I might treat myself to some history and sociology books from the Book Fair.

I envy people in the arts and media because they are known to the mainstream - "glamorous," even. I'd like to be achieve that. My own dabbling in the arts hasn't led to much, and my idea of making tech people into pop culture icons hasn't made headway yet. In time, in time.