Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Ghost Month

In the Chinese lunar calendar, the seventh month is considered the Ghost Month.  During this time, the Chinese almost don’t do anything new or start a project or go on a trip.  You won’t get any invitations to wedding or engagements.  The reason for this is that in Chinese culture and tradition,  this time, the gates of hell are open and the spirits come out to this world.
The 15th of the month, which was yesterday, is the day we celebrate the Ghost Festival.  Since my parents hail from the mainland, they observe the day as they have in China by preparing food and burning incense and paper money for the spirits.  Usually a few days before the 15th, my mom will go to the cemetery and put offerings and burn incense and paper money at the graves of relatives and friends.
Last night, while attending a dinner with members of the board of directors of the Philippine Kho Association, one of the guests mentioned that its a Ghost Month and people should not be going on trips.  This is the reason for the tragedy that happened the other at the Quirino Grandstand.
Another one told stories about the Ghost Month.  In some places in China, the whole town celebrates the whole month, each household cooks food and anyone can go in and eat.  Its like a Filipino Fiesta!   He also mentions that if you will notice, one always has this feeling of weight or tiredness on oneself during the Ghost Month.  He said this is because there is a spirit that is clinging on one’s body.  I forgot to ask how to get rid of that spirit though.
But then again, being Christians, we know that there is only one who has power over spirits, Jesus Christ.

Monday, August 9, 2010

New email spam using Yahoo groups

Just saw a new format of spam that is hitting our servers.
Instead of the email containing the contents of the actual spam text or image, or a link to their own spam site, spammers are now putting in just a link to a yahoo group message screen like:<some_random_words>/message
This is the spammer’s attempt to bypass spam filters but the question is how effective is this spam?  Its more of an annoyance for mail readers as they can just delete the email without even going to the site to check what the spam content might be.    Of course, there are those who just keeps on clicking links without thinking.
I wonder if a particular page can be blocked so these users won’t be able to visit those sites.  We can’t block yahoo groups outright.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Nokia N900 woes: Cannot answer the phone immediately

Sometimes I don’t know what the unit seems to be doing.  This is because sometimes, I’m not using it and a phone call comes in and I can’t open it  to answer the call.   The screen just remains blank and I have to wait a while longer before the screen turns on.  Even sliding the switch doesn’t help.  Some times it takes so long that the caller has already hanged up and I have to return the call instead.  Its ok if the caller is using a Globe which I’m using an unlimited plan, but if its a call from a Smart line, then I have to pay extra on my monthyly bill.
I don’t know if this has to do with its multi-tasking ability such that there are a number of processes running in the background, specially softwares which are supposed to be still in Testing or Development?  That was the warning given when install softwares from these repositories.  But then again, if I did not start the program, then they shouldn’t have been running in the background.   I guess I have to check each of the programs and kill those runaway processes and see if the load will go down.

SSH on the Nokia N900

When visiting clients to check on their systems or problems, I usually bring along my laptop so i can hook into their network and troubleshoot.  Now, I can do without bringing it.
With the Nokia N900, I am able to connect to the client’s network via wifi and test their networks.  Also with its X-terminal and SSH, I am able to login to the linux server and remotely check on errors in the logs to track down the problem.
This is very convenient as I don’t have to lug around a bag with the laptop.
Next step is to find out if I can use the N900 as a bootable drive and boot off it  into a computer.  Right now, I do this using a USB pendrive.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

My Notes on Tumblr

Tumbler, Facebook, WordPress, Mambo/Joomla… Still undecided which to settle into.  My original posts were in the Mambo/joomla CMS so moving away means loosing my old posts.
This is the reason why when I was testing out wordpress with my own install, I used   Now with Tumblr, which I found I can change to the domain that I have, I customized the domain on my Tumblr account to

Update June 26, 2013
I've decided to delete the Wordpress site and consolidate the contents here.  Moving each article so some of the contents may no longer apply.