Mobile phones, services and applications. PCs, PDAs, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Internet, gadgets, electronics, photography. A technology-life journal ... Relaxed prose, sometimes witty, sometimes funny, reflective and insightful. Short and sweet. Filipino.

Friday, July 29, 2005

The day I hit 40

Yesterday, my site statistics reached 40,000 hits.

Whew! It was a long journey. Took almost one whole year to reach 40,000. Here are some milestones / highlights in Technobiography stats:
  • Totals as of July 29 2005:
    * Page Loads : 40,176
    * Unique Visitors : 22,587
    * First Time Visitors : 18,686
    * Returning Visitors : 3,901
  • Daily averages:
    * Page Load : 184
    * Unique Visitors : 114
    * First Time Visitors : 96
    * Returning Visitors : 19
  • Most hits in one day: 529 hits, October 26, 2004
    (the day Technobiography was featured on
What thoughts shall I share on the day I hit 40? Well, I've become more conscious of statistics lately. Mostly because of my renewed interest with Google Adsense revenues. My interest was renewed after reading an article of Abe about a blogger earning US$14,000+ from blogging in more than 20 blogs. Will I ever hit 14, ya think? Will I ever hit US$100 per month, like abe does? Ah, time to day dream and *do* again ...

It's also especially nice when I see some visitors going through my archives, going through my favorite articles, going through many links within Technobiography. It send me the message that some people like what I write.

I haven't had any hate mail naman. So I don't think I've been stepping on other people's toes. But I did get some creepy texts. And I blogged about it as "therapy" to relieve me of my horrors.

And of course, I'm delighted to get word from people around the world, most especially those who are interested in my work in m-commerce for microfinance. In fact, I've had a couple of phone calls from the US and another one this morning asking me about my research. Neat, huh? ;-)

Curious visitors

I get most of my hits from search engines. Some of the curious searches that turn up on Technobiography:
  • Kuya Germs
  • Juliana Palermo
  • Chynna Hortaleza
  • Pia Hontiveros
  • Robin Padilla
  • Alfie Vargas
  • Namfrel
  • Techie Agbayani pics (hahaha!)
  • ano pa ba? ... madagdagan nga ito next time ...

Friends of Technobiography

What else should I note down on the day I hit 40?

Well, I'd like to thank some of my regular/irregular visitors, although I won't be able to mention all (especially yung mga hindi nagpapa-ramdam): Lyra, Jepoyeng, Airwind, Emmanslayer, Binoe, Sky, Claire, Monicai, Ivory, JM, CC, estee, aymskee, wilson, techunk, andre faura (nahan ka na?), dadi Arnold (nahan ka na rin? balita ko manila ka na) and others ...
and the folks with mobile Technobiography in their Pocket: MM and ka rey

If you're a regular Technobiography or Pocket Technobiography or RSS reader, do let me know by sending me a note online. Para naman makilala ko kayo ;-). Tapos friends na tayo.

Thanks also to maiskee, my boss, who tolerates my blogging hobby and sometimes (sometimes lang) shows some degree of delight with my sometimes (sometimes lang) funny articles.

To a million hits and beyond!

ka edong
tumatanda na, batang isip nga lang


Load load load your phone, load your phone ulit....

I featured two online loading services in my previous article: and .

But there's more! Lot's more!

  • - Credit card payments online with PayPal for Globe and Smart subscribers
  • - Only for Smart subscribers. I'm not clear about the payment method for this service.
  • - Buy Globe AutoloadMax via PayPlus using Megalink, Bancnet ATMs
  • Globe AutloloadMax Corporate Edition - A solution for enterprises for allotting prepaid load to their staff. It may as well be used as a loading business, I wonder if they Globe has clients that do that.
  • LoadXtreme - All sorts of prepaid load open for wholesalers and retailers.
I'd like to share a chat session I had with Richard of . It gives us an insight about the online loading business....
** You are now speaking with Richard D., Live Support Department. **
Richard D. : Hello, how may I help you?
ka edong : hi richard d
ka edong : what countries do you cater to? Which country is sending the most load to the Philippines?
Richard D. : The United States is the majority of our business
ka edong : i'm writing an article. in fact, the first part came out already ... sandali
Richard D. : I see, what other questions may I answer for you?
ka edong :
ka edong : how long do your transactions take? from payment to delivery of load?
Richard D. : Only about 1 hour on average
ka edong : What's the most serious problem you've encountered so far with your site?
ka edong : I've heard about hacking problems in other sites. have you experienced anything similar?
Richard D. : No, we have not had that problem.
ka edong : Would you have any figures that would indicate how big the online loading business is? like total load delivered per month?
ka edong : ballparks or a range would suffice
Richard D. : It is a pretty new concept. The market potential is great. We are gaining new customers daily. I am really not at liberty to discuss the financial details though, sorry.
ka edong : no problem.
ka edong : I think that will be all for now. I might login again later if I have more questions
ka edong : Thanks, Richard
Richard D. : Ok sure, or you can email me at
Richard D. : Thanks, and good luck with your article. Please let me know when it is published. Take care.
ka edong : hmmm... interesting ... i'll look up that 247 address.
Richard D. : Please do
ka edong : G'day. logging off

With the many loading services available online, which is the better one for you? I couldn't tell. Maybe some feedback from other users would be of more help. So, do share if you have any experience with these services.

Load away, folks!

Read: Send cellphone load from other countries, Load load load your phone, gently down the web

ka edong

ps. to blog about:


Load, load, load your phone, gently down the web....

I frequently monitor my site statistics. I get hits from Google searches and one of the common searches is “send load to the Philippines”. I didn’t realize until this afternoon that I am on top of the search results.

Visitors get an article from November 2004, “Send cellphone load from other countries” about a service of Globe making AutoloadMax retailers available around the world. But this is not what people are looking for.

So it’s about time I write about two online services that allow users to send load through the web: and .... e-loads/e-pins
First up is established by Erik Kalugdan, maker of InfoTXT (GiveMeUnlimited) SMS software and 3-time winner of the e-services awards. allows online loading of cellphones, internet pre-paid cards, network gaming, PLDT phone cards and others. It accepts payments via PayPlus which makes use of Bancnet and Megalink ATMs in the Philippines.

When Erick presented at the NCC, he also discussed how can be used for a loading business. He explained that cellphone load is discounted on and that users can make a profit by getting cellphone load online and retailing the load to officemates or friends.

Downside: So far, this service can be used by Bancnet and Megalink clients only. I’m quite sure Erick is putting together a credit card payment system. Just visit to see updates of the service. is a younger player established by online friend Arnold Gamboa. caters to cellphone load of the three mobile phone telcos in the Philippines; Smart, Globe and Sun Cellular. The website has a more appealing user interface. It makes me feel like it’s easier to transact with .

Another interesting feature is the forums page. That would give a little more customer support, but so far I haven't seen much activity there. Well, the service is new, afterall.

Etoload has a promo that gives out additional 10% load to early registrants. accepts payments via credit card.

The Verdict:

If you’re abroad and need to send load to the Philippines, is for you (you’ll need a credit card).

If you’re in the Philippines and need to load all sorts of prepaid cards, is for you (you’ll need a Megalink or Bancnet ATM).

I’d like to invite users of the two services to share their feedback. Have you used the online loading services? Are you satisfied? Encountered any problems? Share naman diyan!

Ka edong
budding technopreneur
budding as in flower bud. Not the third sex kind of budding! ;-p

P.S. Ooops! there's more! See upcoming article for another dose of online loading.


Thursday, July 28, 2005

Digital luggage - Evacuating a Burning PC

Edwin and Maya, CD Burning
I was with FIT-ED for around 3 years from 2001-2004. The last work-PC I used at that office was filled to the brim with files - work-related files and some personal files. When it was time to leave, it wasn't a breeze leaving all my 3 years worth of files.

This what I went through:
Organize and backup official files
CD burn official emails
CD burn personal photos
Delete unnecessary files
It wasn't easy... I went through many folders to determine which to keep, which to junk. Frankly, it felt a lot like moving out of a house.

What's funny is that among the first things I moved out of my PC were:
my many digital photos.

Reminds me of a question I was asked when I was in college:
Q: "After all lives are saved from your burning home, what *thing* would you save to avoid losing it?"

A: My answer: Photo Albums

Some parallelisms of my digital life and my so called real life.

ka edong
digital kargador


Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Philippine IT Statistics (early 2004)

Chin Wong has an article opening up a discussion on number of .ph websites there are. The figure he has is 125,000. The figure I had in 2004 was 30,851. I also had a 2004 estimate for number of Philippine-related websites: 181,403 (in 2004).

From my digital archives, I thus resurrect some Philippine IT stats. These figures are from my research when I helped write a paper in 1st Quarter 2004. Read the notes further below for links (expect some loose liks) and other explanations.

Philippine facts
Total population (2002 projection): 79,503,675 a
Rural population as a percentage of total population: 42.32 % b
Key economic sectors: Agriculture, Services, Industry c
Literacy in national languages: 93.9% d
Functional literacy: 83.79 e
Computer ownership per 100 inhabitants: 1.93 f
Telephone lines per 100 inhabitants (2001): 8.91 g
Internet hosts per 10,000 inhabitants: 2.54 h
Internet café/telecentre per 10,000 inhabitants: 0.165 i
Internet users per 100 inhabitants: 4.27 j
Cell phone subscribers per 100 inhabitants: 15.897 k
Number of websites in the national language: 1,814 l
Number of websites in English and other languages: 181,403 m
National bandwidth within the country:
* Partial aggregate data: 31Mbps o
National bandwidth to and from the country:
* Partial aggregate data: 367 Mbps p
Ratio of incoming and outgoing Internet traffic volume:
80% incoming: 20% outgoing q

Sources for the chart “Philippines facts”
(a) Population projection 2002
(b) As of 1999, Global Competitiveness Report (2001-2002) Harvard
(c) National Economic and Development Authority (31 January 2002) 2001 Full Year Economic Performance (link)
(d) National Statistical and Coordination Board
Basic or simple literacy is defined by the National Statistics Office (NSO) as the ability to read and write with understanding simple messages in any language or
(e) NSO Functional literacy
Functional literacy is a significantly higher level of literacy which includes not only reading and writing skills but also numeracy skills. The skills must be sufficiently advanced to enable the individual to participate fully and
efficiently in activities commonly occurring in his life situation that require a reasonable capability of communicating by written language.
(f) Global Competitiveness Report (2001-2002) Harvard
(g) As of 2001. National Telecommunications Commission.
Total lines: 6,938,762 (2001)
(h) Global Competitiveness Report (2001-2002) – Harvard
(i) Based on 1,312 estimated cafés in 12 major cities in the Philippines percent5Cstatistics
Denominator used is 79.5 million Filipinos
(j) Based on 3.4 million Internet users. Internet Users Study by ACNielsen Consulting, June 2002 (as reported by ITNetcentral)
(k) As of June 2002. Based on 12,638,375 mobile phone subscribers as reported by Computerworld 2 September 2002, p.12. Denominator used is 79.5 million Filipinos.
(l) Through an e-mail interview, Ken Ilio (webmaster and owner of since 1986), the trend is one national language site per 100 English sites.
(m) (i) Statistics from indicate that it has a ratio of 5.88 Philippine related websites per .ph website.
(ii) Figures from indicate that there are 30,851 .ph websites.
(iii) Multiply total .ph websites to ratio and we have an estimate of Philippines related websites = 181,403 websites.
(n) National bandwidth within the country: 31Mbps (Partial aggregate data).
There are three Internet exchanges in the Philippines. The figure above does not include private peering of ISPs (ISP1 connecting to ISP2 without going through an Internet exchange).
References: Telephone and e-mail interviews published January 2002.
(o) National bandwidth to and from the country: 367 Mbps (Partial aggregate data)
(p) 80 percent incoming: 20 percent outgoing (As per e-mail interview)

Feel free to contact me or leave a comment if you have any questions or concerns. I'm good for discussions. ;-)

ka edong


Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Smart WiFi wondering

Smart WiFiI’ve been poking around Smart WiFi lately. My interest, as usual, is how it can be used to bring technology to the people.

Smart WiFi is a new service of Smart telecommunications that delivers Internet to users without the need for telephone lines.

Here’s what I’ve found out so far about Smart WiFi.
Smart WiFi is not WiFi. But a techie Smart WiFi user has suggested on the ph-mobiletech yahoogroups that Smart WiFi may in fact be using WiFi within the network but not for delivery of Internet to the end-user.
• Smart WiFi can deliver internet speeds of 128 Kbps Mbps – twice that of the regular dial-up speeds.
• To get Smart WiFi, a user will need to have a clear line of sight to a Smart cellsite. If a tree gets in the way of the line of sight, the internet connection suffers.
• Smart WiFi is initially being deployed outside Metro Manila
• You don’t need to be a Smart subscriber to get Smart WiFi
• Introductory price of around P788 per month and plus around P1,000 installation fee.
• Installation fee includes an antenna on the residence or building roof that is pointed to the nearest Smart cellphone tower.

Some thoughts:
• I’m excited about this technology because it theoretically can deliver last mile Internet access to any island in our archipelago that has a Smart cellsite. And that means almost everywhere in the country (even in the Kalayaan group of islands!).
• As expected, we are hearing some complaints from early adopters of Smart WiFi. Some are complaining about poor customer service and basic lack of awareness of Smart staff about the facts of the service. I say that this is expected because I have come to understand that new services are difficult to disseminate to a large bureaucracy like Smart. It will take some time before their customer service representatives will gain enough knowledge to sufficiently support Smart WiFi inquiries from customers.
• I’m excited about connecting remote areas of the Philippines with Smart WiFi. If, in the past, the requirements to bring internet access to an area were: electricity and telephone lines, now these are no longer prerequisites! Now we can bring internet access to Cuyo Palawan, where there are no telephone lines!
• I was wondering why there wasn’t much talk about Smart WiFi, considering that it is a technology that can change the game of providing Internet access. Well, the online discussions on Smart WiFi are gaining ground.
• Ooops, almost forgot. I feel it’s a disservice that the service was named WiFi. It just adds to the confusion in this already confused country.
In the meantime, I’m on the lookout for feedback from Smart WiFi subscribers.

Ka edong

Read: Smart WiFi
Search Technobiography: Smart WiFi


Sunday, July 24, 2005

PC Praning - TypeRecorder spyware

Akala ni wifey ko kung sino ang naka-away ko.

We were at an internet shop to check mail on a Sunday afternoon in the middle of a three day weekend sa province.

After reading a few emails in my Gmailbox, a pop-up message came up. It said that the computer had a trial software called TYPERECORDER.

First reaction: "Sheet! What have I typed?!"

After verification at the software developer's website, I confirmed what I suspected: The computer I was using had a software that was recording each and every key I was typing!

The software is a key logger. A text file hidden somewhere in the computer has my Gmail username and password! Buti I hadn't typed anything more sensitive than that.

Imagine if I used that computer to login my BPI Express Online account (I never use my BPI Online on public computers). Anyone who gains access to the key log file will have my password and access to my BPI account. Scary!

I consider myself lucky that I found out about the software. Fact is, the software could be running on ANY computer and the users would never know. Tsk tsk tsk.

I told my wifey that we were leaving the Internet shop. I called the attention of the shop attendant. I told him:

"It is the responsibility of the shop owner to ensure that their computers don't have software like this," showing him the pop-up message on the computer screen.

He replied that they couldn't avoid it. He said a technician was coming the next day to find the erring software and fix it.

Too late, your explanation. We're leaving! Sabay irap, parinig sa ibang users kung bakit galit, sabay walk-out. Ang taray!

It pays to be vigilant and informed.

I wonder if there's an online service that I could run when I use a public PC that will indicate whether the computer is "clean" and free from keyloggers or other spyware.

Time to change my Gmail password before anybody tries to get in.

ka edong
tech praning


Friday, July 22, 2005

Mababaw. Bow. (Friendster SPAMocide)

I started getting a deluge of Friendster SPAM when more people started using the Friendster blogging service.

The SPAM hailed:
Mike has updated his Friendster Blog
Michelle has updated her Friendster Blog
Bonifacio has updated his Friendster Blog
Ildefonso has updated his Friendster Blog
Procopio has updated his Friendster Blog
Maxima has updated her Friendster Blog
Bantay has updated his Friendster Blog
Whew! What the what????!!! I don't logon to Friendster regularly and I do not intend to visit a friend's blog each and every time it is updated!

How do I get out of this SPAM dump? Here's how I did it and it's been working fine:
  • Login to your friendster account
  • Click account settings (upper right side of webpage)
  • In "Receive Notification Emails", select No
  • In "Receive Friend Updates", select No
  • Click Save
Whew! A relief from Friendster SPAM.
Need relief from Smart SMS SPAM (SPASMS)? Try this: Txt Exclusion

Ah... makes me crave for a SPAM breakfast on Sunday ....

ka edong
spam killer


Thursday, July 21, 2005


There's an idea!

Globe launched a "Search for the great G-Cash idea"!

This is a G-Cash Concept Application Contest open to college/university students. It calls for students to come up with a great idea for using G-Cash. Winner gets a million pesos (cash and G-cash)! Not bad!

That's the right way to go! I had this same idea in mind when I realized that there are just so many ways to make use of G-Cash and we shouldn't leave it to the engineers (like me) to figure things out. We need to get the help of people in the real world with real needs to figure out how they want to use G-Cash.

Goodluck to the participants of the contest! I'm looking forward to seeing some brilliant ideas from our students.

teacher, teachee

Search Technobiography: G-Cash


Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Texting while Fighting

On the Text messaging Army's indispensable tool in war

That story reminds me of a few minutes watching TV-coverage of the Oakwood Mutiny back in 2003....

I was watching a live TV-coverage of the Oakwook Mutiny. The cameras focused on a group of 4 government-side soldiers at the foot of the flyover that leads from Ayala Ave to EDSA. The soldiers kept cover behind the concrete pavement of the flyover, taking quick and careful glances towards Oakwood. They were armed with rifles and bullets and grenades and a staunch "Rambo" look splattered on their faces.

After a minute or two on live television, one of the soldiers grabbed something from his pocket. It was a cellphone. He took a call. Then he surveyed the vicinity, looking for something.

When he saw the TV cameras, he smiled!

Your guess is as good as mine, but I could only imagine this cellphone conversation that triggered his smile:
Misis: "Sweetheart! Ayusin mo ang buhok mo, nasa TV ka!"
Then he whispered something to his fellow-soldiers. And then they smiled behind the war paint on their faces!

Ah, comic relief in the middle of the tension of the Oakwood Mutiny.

ka edong
cellphone warrior

Read: Texting while driving


Tuesday, July 19, 2005

3G, m-commerce and the farmer

I'm recycling an e-mail I sent to a Geneva-based professor yesterday. He wrote me after reading about my study on m-Commerce for microfinance. For his privacy, I won't publish his name. The point of this post is to share my thoughts, as I've written yesterday in Blog ang Mundo.
Professor writes:
> I'll be interested to have your opinion on (a) how you think 3G will help Philippine farmers...

Hi xxxxxxxxxx,

The Philippines is highly SMS dependent. On the one hand, we have seen numerous programs, services, applications that maximize the use of SMS. This is what Filipinos are used to and good at.

But on the other hand, because the Philippines has created so many ways of using SMS to serve our needs, I think the Philippines has also been very slow on making the transition to 3G. I think the large part of the prepaid market in the Philippines (around 85%) are still using phones that cannot do MMS/GPRS/e-mail.

I do believe that there are opportunities where 3G will be able to help farmers in the Philippines. But it will not, as yet, reach farmer-consumer level. I think it will happen first at the level where 3G will be a tool for NGOs or Government agencies in communicating the needs of the farmer.

Professor writes:
> (b) whether there are any opportunities for Philippine farmers to use m-commerce.


At its very essence, I think m-Commerce is there to speed up the transactions at all levels of the supply-chain. Thus, m-commerce would be able to help the farmer transact more quickly so as to shorten the turn around time for which his/her capital can be used to make profits.

One of the ideas that came up during my study was to establish m-commerce desks at various (physical) markets or ports. The idea is to create an additional conduit for traders to complete their transactions. I am considering turning this idea into a business model, something that I may pursue in the future.

Have you heard of b2bpricenow by Mr. Tedjie Herbosa. It garnered a World Bank award and grant circa 2003. The website allows markets to trade online. Furthermore, B2Bpricenow also added an SMS module where farmers could check for market prices in neighboring trading posts.

Recently, Globe Telecom came out with a weather service supposedly designed for farmers or fishermen. It allows farmers/fishermen to access 5-day weather forecasts. Honestly, I think the fishermen/farmers know better to just gaze at the sky or observe the insects, listen to the radio to be able to tell how the weather will be like in the coming days.

Moreover, there is also another service that gives market prices. This is likely to be more useful than the weather service. As for actual usage of these services, that is still something to be observed at the ground.

You'll find an article about these two services here: .

> I would like to quote you in my own next paper.

What paper would this be?

Feel free to send me more of your ideas or questions. I've found a couple of your writings too and will look through them.




Sunday, July 17, 2005

Blog ang Mundo

Blog ang MundoI'm still amazed how my blogging has allowed me to interact with people around the world. My blogs have allowed me to communicate my ideas and have created an avenue for people to find me.

Just today, I received another e-mail from a Geneva-based professor working with an international organization. He sent me a few questions about m-commerce. He wanted to get my opinions for a paper he was writing.

In the past, I also got an offer to try out some mobile services. This was a direct result of my blog writing. Another time, I wrote about an imagined event: "Xtreme Blogging". A few days later, I was being asked for an appointment to talk about the event! Whoa, an idea that people just might entertain. Interesting...

I've also gotten a lot of help from people I refer to as "my online friends". I've had some real-life (tech) dilemmas and people have been kind enough to share their opinions. (See 2 laptops, 1 phoneline; File sharing puzzle)

Many times I've talked about a few of my ideas. And then I'd receive an e-mail or a comment relating my ideas to some real-life services or experiments or business propositions. Interesting. Interesting how this blog has opened my world.

I like being able to take snapshots of my thoughts, of my ideas, of my life and being able to read it in the future. I like being able to tell friends, "I agree with you! In fact I've written about that a few months ago!" I like the way my blog has allowed me to share my ideas and how it has opened doors for me.

It's nice discovering what blogging can do for me. I wonder what it's like for others. I pose this question to my readers:
How has blogging affected your life?
What has blogging done for you lately?

ka edong
blog ang mundo


Wednesday, July 13, 2005

OT: Para sa inyo at sa sinasakyan niyo

O, para sa mga may sasakyan diyan. (Pwera tsinelas).



"24 by 24 by 24"

In celebration of its fourth year anniversary, Drive Online Inc.
(, one of the country's leading Fleet Management Solutions providers, is giving away 24 memberships to 24 HEROES (24-Hour Emergency ROadsidE Service) within a 24-hour period.

24 HEROES, Drive Online Inc.'s flagship service, boasts one of the industry's biggest fleet of tow trucks and one of the widest geographical coverages. 24 HEROES is powered by Ibero Asistencia, the country's leader in roadside assistance. Ibero Asistencia is a subsidiary of Sistema Internacional de Asistencia Mapfre (SIAM), one of Europe's largest insurance and assistance conglomerates. The state of the art 24 HEROES call center in Makati City conforms to international call center standards and is managed and operated by Ibero Asistencia.

To join, simply email the following information to :
1. Name:
2. Date of birth:
3. Company
4. Office phone number:
5. Email address:
6. Mobile phone number:
7. Mailing address
8. Vehicle year (e.g. 2001):
9. Make (e.g. Honda):
10. Model (e.g. Civic):
11. Plate number:
12. Color:
13. Tracking code: DOI - 2 (Note: leave this item as is)
14. Complete this sentence: My dream car is a ____________________.

The first 24 people to send the above information by 12 noon on July 14, 2005 win a one-year 24 HEROES membership worth P695. It's that simple!

Just make sure the vehicle you enter meets the following criteria:
· It is not used for public transport
· It is not for hire
· It is not used for motor sports and other contests
· It is not used for the transport of merchandise
· It is not more than 10 years old as of July 14, 2005
· It is in good running condition
· It is in the Philippines

Note: One person may send only one entry. Individuals who send more than one entry will be disqualified.

Feel free to forward this to your friends.

Good luck!

The Drive Online Team


m-Commerce: Break muna

Whew! Sandali, napagod kasi ako dun sa bakbakan nung lunes eh.

To be continued ang m-Commerce series ko, pero to be announced nalang. 'K?

To all who are following the series, please be patient. Come back again for the rest of the series.

k! edong
da sleepy emkonomist

m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited (Part 1),
m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited again (Part 2),
Adbertisement Muna, G-Cash Revisited (Part 3)
Search Technobiography:
Smart Padala, Smart Money, G-Cash


Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Three pet mice!

Fiona's wireless optical pet mouseThree pet mice!
Three pet mice!
See how they scroll!
See how they scrawl!

We've got a couple of pet mice at home.

The first is a wireless optical RF mouse which is soooo small, it's shadow is smaller than a credit card. It comes with a receiver that plugs in to the USB port.

Kurdapia's kewl na kewl blue pet mouse
The second is an optical mouse that's blue and sleek and looks like an alien mouse from outerspace! I got that mouse as a gift from Ka Rey during the second anniv party of airfagev. Ka Rey said, "Para kay Kurdapia". Thanks, ka rey!

And, for the third mouse, I still don't have a photo of it. It's sneaking around the backroom pa. Once it gets caught in my mousepad (flypaper!), I'll post it's picture here. mwahahaha!

ka edong
mouse trainer


Monday, July 11, 2005

m-Commerce: Mano y Mano (Part 4)

m-Commerce on Technobiography

Today I write a point-by-point comparison of Cash vs. G-Cash vs. Smart Money. This comparison first came out as part of my m-Commerce study. The major updates of this latest comparison are the moves by Smart Money to improve the ease of use (discussed in Part 1).

Information in this comparison are based on:
* my personal use of these services
* print ads
* websites
* information obtained from customer service representatives via the respective hotlines
See notes and references below.
The Comparison Criteria
Cash vs. G-Cash vs. Smart Money
* Ease of Entry
* Telco subscriber base
* Current usage
* Liquidity
* Security

G-Cash vs. Smart Money
* Ease of Use
* Convert cash into mobile currency
* Convert mobile currency into cash
* Usage with Partner Merchants
* Person-to-Person transfer
* Transaction Costs
* Other Costs
* Expiration

Go ahead, read on and tell me what you think ... Let's fight! Ting ting!

Comparison CriteriaCashG-CashSmart Money
Telco subscriber base* * 12.5 million customers (December 2004) [Note 1] * 19.2 million subscribers (December 2004) [Note 2
Usage* The Filipino population* 400,000 (as of July 2005) [Note 3]* 100,000 (as of May 2005) [Note 4]
Liquidity* 100% liquid - use it anywhere* Low - need to go to Globe and other partner merchants to use it or convert it to cash (Cash-out)
* Use it for person-to-person (P2P) transactions
* Moderate - use it at Megalink or ExpressNet ATMs
* Use it at any Mastercard creditcard terminal
* Use it for P2P transactions
Security* As secure as your wallet* Uses a mobile Personal Identification Number (m-PIN) in the message body of an SMS message. M-PIN is in clear view.
* m-PIN needs to be erased from the cellphone to ensure that a lost/snatched cellphone does not bear m-PIN in the SMS message archive
* Uses a SIM Toolkit (STK) menu where the m-PIN is never in clear view
* Uses encryption when sending transaction commands

Comparison CriteriaG-CashSmart Money
Ease of Entry* Easy - one time SMS registration
* Limited cash-in merchants to get G-Cash
* Account number is the same as phone number
* Still Difficult
* Althought activation of Smart Money "virtual account" has been simplified (See Part 1). But the virtual account can conduct very limited transactions ( receive only).
* A subscriber still needs to apply for a Smart Money card to avail of the full Smart Money services such as encashment, Smart Money transfer etc. [Note 5]
* Depending on where application was filed, the Smart Money card can be issued in 1 day to 2 weeks.
* Smart Money account number (M-Comm number) is different from cellphone number
Ease of Use * Easy - P2P transactions are very similar to share-a-load * Moderate - requires activation of STK menu
* Requires familiarity with the use of STK menu
Convert cash into mobile currency* Also called "Cash-in"
* Globe Telecom Business Centers
* G-Cash partners merchants (LBC, Cebuana Lhuillier, 7-11 etc.)
* See G-Cash partner merchants here
* Over the counter at Smart wireless centers
* Over the counter at partner banks (BDO) and merchants (McDonalds, Tambunting, SeaOil etc.)
* See Smart Money Merchants here
* Also through mobile banking from own bank account to Smart Money (requires subscriber to have an enrolled mobile banking account)
Convert mobile currency into cash * Also called "Cash-out"
* Globe centers and other partners
* Via ATM withdrawal (MegaLink, ExpressNet banks) -- requires a Smart Money card
* Smart wireless centers
* Merchant partners (McDonald's, Tambunting, SeaOil etc.)
Usage with Partner Merchants * National Bookstore, Mercury Drug, Burger King etc. * Any merchant that accepts MasterCard
* Partner merchants
Person-to-Person transfer * Any Globe user in the country
* Easy - send to the cellphone number which is also the G-Cash account number
* If sending to a non-registered cellphone, the transfer requires an additional confirmation step to proceed with transaction
* Smart money users
* Not all Smart subscribers
* Sender needs to know the m-Comm number of the recepient
Transaction Costs * P2P transfer - P1 per SMS sent
* Cash-in at Globe - P10 or 1% of Cash-in amount
* Use at partners - no charge except P1 for SMS G-Cash sending/confirmation
* Cash-in/Cash-out at partner merchants - from 1% to 5% or more of Cash-in/Cash-out amount depending on merchant.
* See partner rates here
* P2P transfer - P2.50 per SMS sent
* Use at partners - none except P2.50 per SMS sent
* Withdrawal at ATMs - P11 ; for Except Banco De Oro ATMs, no charge
* See transaction fees here
Other costs * * Card personalization fee for issuance of Smart Money card
* Annual fee for Smart Money card
Expiration * None * Smart Money account is suspended after a number of months, depending on the type of Smart Money account (e.g. individual subscriber account, Smart Money accounts for employee payroll disbursement etc.) (Discussed in Part 2 of this series)

Who was the knock-out winner? Who got pummeled? You be the judge.

As usual, I'd like to hear from my readers. Do you have any questions, violent reactions? Any doubts? Do you have comparison criteria you'd like to suggest?

Feel free to leave a comment or to send me an e-mail.

See you on Wednesday, July 13, Part 5 of this m-Commerce series. I will discuss what m-Commerce can do for our country and economy.

Ka Edong
da emkonomist

m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited (Part 1),
m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited again (Part 2),
Adbertisement Muna, G-Cash Revisited (Part 3)
Search Technobiography:
Smart Padala, Smart Money, G-Cash

1.) Clarissa S. Batino “Globe Telecom says price war unsustainable”, Published Apr. 05, 2005; available at Money; accessed on 11 April 2005
2.) Clarissa S. Batino “Globe Telecom says price war unsustainable”, Published Apr. 05, 2005; available at Money; accessed on 11 April 2005
3.) Ramon Isberto of Smart Communications at the Corporate Social Responsibility Expo, July 6, 2005
4.) Conversation with a Globe representative
5.) Rose Matiga, Smart Money customer service representative, telephone inquiry over Smart Money Hotline, 10 July 2005

Other References:

* Globe G-Cash website:
* Smart Money website:
* Globe and Smart presentations at the PICS e-Commerce Congress, November2004
* Smart Money Hotline (15177 on a Smart cellphone); Smart Hotline tel. 8881111
* Globe Hotline (tel. 730-1000 or 211 on a Globe Handyphone)


Saturday, July 09, 2005

Google Earth to Edong... Earth to Edong...

(Visit the new Technobiography)

Google Earth

I tried Google Maps. It was cool. But Google Earth is Awesome! Amazing! See for yourself...

San Juanico Bridge connecting Leyte to Samar. I had to verify whether Derkie was accurate when he said the bridge takes the form of the letters S and L.Satellite photos have been on the web for so many years now. But what Google Earth did was give us an interface where we can so easily find places on earth and view satellite photos of them. What's cool too is how it zooms and zips from one place to another as if we're in a rocket ship that can go up so quickly to see the wide view and down so quickly to see more details of the landscape below.

Download Google Earth. It's around 11Mb, it's a program you'll need to install on your computer. Not for the weak processor-ed. It didn't work on old Kurdapia, my laptop. But it's working very well with Fiona, Maya's computer.

Take a look at some photos....

Manila! The details aren't very clear. But the congestion is. Sayang, wala masyadong ma-zoom. Unlike the images in the U.S., ang lilinaw ng mga streets, buildings
(Visit the new Technobiography)
Manila! The details aren't very clear. But the congestion is. Sayang, wala masyadong ma-zoom. Unlike the images in the U.S., ang lilinaw ng mga streets, buildings.

Cuyo! This is where I spent a year. At the lower left is Bisucay Island. Right is the main island of Cuyo. They've lengthened the pantalan, I see...
(Visit the new Technobiography)
Cuyo! This is where I spent a year as a volunteer teacher. At the lower left is Bisucay Island. Right is the main island of Cuyo. They've lengthened the pantalan, I see...

And, last for tonight, Sydney! This is where my sister and her family are. I see the opera house and the bridge! Atchi, I'll visit you there someday. Someday soooooon!!!!
(Visit the new Technobiography)
And, last for tonight, Sydney! This is where my sister and her family are. I see the opera house and the bridge! Atchi, I'll visit you there someday. Someday soooooon!!!!

I'm still amazed at Google and what technology can do.
And even more amazed at how God's hand created such a wonderful world. Let's not ruin it.

ka edong
narito sa maliit kong mundo
namamangha sa kalawakan ng mundo
May Dios!


Friday, July 08, 2005

m-Commerce: G-Cash Revisited (Part 3)

I've written a lot about G-Cash in the past. It started in October 2004 when G-Cash first came out. I tried using G-Cash in the malls and I talked about the difficulties I encountered. I also talked about what I thought were the areas of improvement for G-Cash.

One reason I studied G-Cash so closely was because I used it in my study of m-Commerce for Microfinance. And while I was busy completing my study, there were some developments with G-Cash that came out which I did not write about. This is the time to write about those developments.

In Part 3 of this m-Commerce series, we'll revist what G-Cash has been doing in the past months: (1) building its network of partner merchants and (2) bringing more new G-Cash users onboard. Let's also kilatis the growth of G-Cash further ...

Building a wider network of partner merchants

G-Cash usage: stories from field
It's painless to find out what G-Cash has been up to in the past months. Just visit their G-Cash News page and you'll get a hang of their new partners and services.

You'll find new partners such as Gold's Gym, Cris Sport, Urban Spa etc.

What's interesting is that they have a few non-commercial partners. These include International organization UNICEF as well as Philippine NGOs Kythe Foundation and Children's Hour.

Some government agencies are also onboard. BIR payments can be made via G-Cash as well as Business renewal payments.

Ragnarok is there too. You can top-up on Ragnarok pre-paid credits using G-Cash. (I had a different concept before when I discussed how Ragnarok players could use G-Cash to trade gaming weapons/potions etc.)

G-Cash can also be used to buy Globe load. Whew! A bit late, but at least quite expected.

*shhhh....* Victoria Court is another G-Cash partner *whisper* ... But, who would like to pay Victoria Court via G-Cash when G-Cash tracks all transactions, huh? 'Di ba non-trackable cash ang karaniwang pambayad sa motel, right?

And yes, G-Cash for schools! I wonder which schools are actually using this now. Concept is, let parents pay school fees through G-Cash directly from the parent's phone to the school. I had discussed this before in an article about mobile services for OFWs.

There's a service that didn't catch my attention until today. I found out that you can actually include a message when you send G-Cash. This introduces a lot of possibilities which I will discuss next week in this m-Commerce series.

More G-Cash users

G-Cash has been creating new users through a high-touch marketing campaign of G-Cash stalls in SM Malls. At these stalls, there is a G-Cash representative who can explain things to anybody interested and guide people in registering G-Cash on their cellphone.

This could be a good step because subscribers need to hear explanations. G-Cash is not an easy technology to understand.

One time I spoke to a G-Cash representative in SM Beguio, she told me that she gets around 20-50 new G-Cash registrants per day. My perception is, this isn't contributing much to the number of users. Perhaps the bigger impact of these stalls is the visibility, rather than the number of added users to the network.

Growing, are we?

With the highly versatile payment system that G-Cash is, my question is: is G-Cash growing fast enough and as fast as it can?

I hear that there were around 100,000 G-Cash users as of May 2005. That's 100,000 G-Cash users within just 8 months. Not bad. But I think it could be better. What's the problem then?

I've identified two major barriers to the wide adoption of G-Cash.

First is the lack of m-commerce awareness of subscribers. In a survey I conducted in Laguna in connection with my study on m-Commerce for Microfinance, I found that very few people knew about G-Cash. Some even claim to have never heard about it before, this despite the big billboard at one of their town's major street intersections. m-Commerce just hasn't reached the awareness of most people.

Second is the lack of infrastructure. The main peice of infrastructure lacking is the places where anybody could exchange Cash for G-Cash (Cash-in) or the other way around (Cash-out). For example, if I went to, say...., a gig at Malate, I would be totally unsure of where I could Cash-in. In contrast, I would be very sure that I can get Globe load at a nearby corner store or ambulant vendor in Malate. In other words, there just isn't enough places where I could get or give G-Cash.

G-Cash ATM. Click here to see more photosOne of Globe's solutions to this infrastructure problem is what they call eNCash, a G-Cash ATM. You can "deposit" cash into the ATM and receive G-Cash on your cellphone (Cash-in). You can also "withdraw" G-Cash from your cellphone and receive cash from the ATM (Cash-out).

This is an expensive solution to the infrastructure problem. How much money and how long will it take to install a substantial number of these machines in key cities in the country? It will cost Globe some manufacturing expenses, real-estate expenses and maintenance expenses. Nonetheless, it is a good addition to the technologies that Globe can use to serve its clients. But it will not be the key solution to the lack of Cash-in/Cash-out points in the country.

Now what?
In part 4 of this m-Commerce series: Mano y Mano

Ah, that's the tricky part. There is lots to do. And the sooner we do it, the better. Thus lays the theme of my upcoming articles in this m-Commerce series.

The next articles will tackle how to deploy m-Commerce more effectively. Another topic I will discuss is what the impact of m-Commerce will have on the Philippine economy especially for the little businessmen/businesswomen (pc tayo dito *smile*) and for the ordinary Filipino.

ka edong
da emkonomist

Read: m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited (Part 1),
m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited again (Part 2),
Adbertisement Muna
Search Technobiography:
Smart Padala, Smart Money, G-Cash


Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Puzzle: 1 phoneline, 2 laptops

Help with a puzzle, anyone?

I'm looking for a solution to the puzzle. I'm giving out a prize for the best solution. My criteria: Simple and Cheap.

Prize is: a 10-day unlimited access WorldPass card trial account. You can use WorldPass for Globe's WiFi hotspots, dial-up or broadband access. (See GlobeQuest)


Our Mandaluyong home has two laptops. Mine is Kurdapia, an old Toshiba Satellite with a PCMCIA WiFi card. Maya's is Fiona, a new Toshiba with built-in Celeron WiFi capabilities.

Puzzle is:

How can my wife and I have an Internet connection simultaneously on two laptops at home?
Our regular Internet connection is dial-up to PLDT Vibe via our PLDT landline.

Both Kurdapia and Fiona run WinXP, both have an ethernet LAN port and a telephone port and USB. Fiona has an IR port, Kurdapia doesn't.

Deadline: July 20.

What's your solution?

Ka Edong
MoBlogging in the MRT

Btw, PCMint has a new home = home of Kuya B's family

Search Technobiography for previous real-life puzzles


m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited again (Part 2)

On my next m-Commerce article: G-Cash revisited
out on July 8, Friday

Last week, I organized an Online Web Seminar (Webinar) on m-Commerce for Microfinance with the assistance of Lakan Leadership Institute. We quickly came up with the m-Commerce Webinar in response to the sudden influx of visitors to Mobile Tulay, thanks to the article. We wanted visitors to access more information on m-Commerce for Microfinance and give Webinar participants an opportunity to ask questions about m-Commerce applications in the Philippines.

The Webinar went quite well. We had intelligent questions from our Webinar participants that lead to a good online discussion. We have more Webinars coming up in the next few weeks.

But prior to the Webinar, we had some preparations to do. Among them was the method for receiving registration fees. And what better way to receive registration fees than through m-Commerce services!

I had no problem receiving our Webinar registration fee through G-Cash. That was easy.

But via my Smart Money – ah, that was another story. Aside from giving participants two m-Commerce options for sending their registration fee, I was also especially interested in trying out Smart Money anew – what with the latest attempts at simplifying Smart Money registration which I discussed two weeks ago.

I had not used my Smart Money account for some time. I used it when I was still with FIT-ED. That time, I had a small remittance business with my friend in Malaysia.

Time to wake up my Smart Money account!

Using the STK (SIM Toolkit), I did a balance inquiry. I had to recall what my PIN was and I had to figure out if I used 4-digits, 6-digits or 8-digits. For all my many attempts, I got two responses via SMS: one was "invalid PIN", the second was "Unable to process transaction".

Well, let’s try calling the Smart Money hotline (15177 on a Smart cellphone) and see what the problem could be.

I spoke to a customer service representative named Tim. I asked her whether there was an "expiration" period where a period of inactivity with a Smart Money account will "suspend" a Smart Money account. She confirmed that there was such a built-in system procedure that renders a "dormant" Smart Money account suspended.

After some verification, she confirmed that my Smart Money account was suspended.

First concern: I requested for a re-activation of my Smart Money account.
Tim said I should check within 24-hours to see if the account has been re-activated. Almost one week after my conversation with Tim, my Smart Money account has not been re-activated.

Second concern: Out of curiosity (being my normal usyosero self), I asked Tim for information on how many months it takes before an inactive Smart Money account is suspended. She explained that it depends on the type of Smart Money account. For example, there are Smart Money accounts that are issued by companies for purposes of payroll disbursement. Mine, on the other hand, was an ordinary individual Smart Money account via Addict Mobile. At the end of it all, (by now, my friend) Tim explained that she cannot divulge the number of months before a dormant account is suspended.

I also inquired via e-mail about the number of dormant months before an account is suspended. I asked about whether dormant accounts with, say P10,000, are also suspended. And if so, where does this P10,000 go when the Smart Money account is suspended.

I still don’t have the answers. I hope to find out in the near future.

In the meantime, I will accept Webinar registration fees via G-Cash. And try once again to call the Smart Money hotline and make a second request for re-activation of my Smart Money account.

Wish me luck!

Ka edong
da em-konomist

Read: m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited (Part 1), Adbertisement Muna
Search Technobiography:
Smart Padala, Smart Money, G-Cash


Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Google Search TV!

I read an article last week on Asian Wallstreet Journal about one of Google's latest exploits.

Google's goal is to search ALL information on the globe.

Early this year, Google began an experiment that cached (i.e. stored) TV shows. It also stored transcripts of the shows. These transcripts were searchable.

A search for "sanity", for example, would show results of TV shows where the word "sanity" was used. Video clips (or was it the entire TV show?) would be available with the search results.

It won't be easy for Google. TV networks cry FOUL! Naturally. TV networks will claim intellectual property rights, of course. The sole right to do replays and get revenues from old TV shows -- that's what it is.

That's in Google labs. Let's see what happens to Google vs TV networks.

To Google: if you have a Google experiment that will attempt to search information in my brain, I'm a willing subject! Let's see if there's anything inside ü .

Google search DVDs

My friend and his wife went to the DVD mecca in Quiapo. He was awestruck at the immense collection of DVDs. Titles included old classics, art films and even Mc Gyver and Starsky & Hutch episodes.

He described the 2-block area of DVD shops as "better than the internet!"

My friend wanted a particular season of West Wing. They went to each stall but couldn't find the elusive DVD set.

Then they reached Mila - the "Google" of this DVD mecca as my friend described. My friend specified the DVDs he wanted and then he waited. Mila took off around DVD mecca and crawled her database. A few minutes later, Mila came back with the catch in hand.

"O, suki na tayo, ha. Balik kayo dito, ha" Mila said in a sing-song voice as she put the DVDs in a plastic bag.

My friend said: "Pwedeng i-test?" Ooops! Wrong move...

"Hinanap ko na nga yan para sa inyo, eh! Wala, walang test test kapag DVD Set. Hwag nalang!" Mila exclaimed in exasperation, tossing back the DVDs to the pile of other DVDs.

Aba! May temper itong search engine na ito. But aside from that, my friend has a newfound DVD suki - Google Mila.

Ka Edong
Gugo ... ang ginamit kong shampoo ko nuon


Digiprint - 'Di na natuto

Insanity na talaga ito. I've written about how useless LBC's Package Tracking was for me.

Now let me tell you about my experience with LBC's photo developing and delivery service: .

The pitch

Upload your photos, share them online, order prints, have them delivered by LBC to any address in the Philippines. Another service allows you to drop off a roll of film at LBC and receive the prints via courier.

Neat? Not so.


I tried uploading photos. But the Digiprint website required a plug-in that didn't work well with Firefox. So I tried Internet Explorer. Okay, *sigh* sige na nga, install plug-in.

After installing the plug-in, Digiprint began displaying the contents of MyPictures folder of my laptop, Kurdapia, within the IE browser. Ayos!

But (always but...), I couldn't upload my photos in one go. Argh! A message kept coming up saying something useless like: "Upload Failed. Error 1234."

I had to upload files in batches of 6-10 photos to avoid the error. Bummer.


After uploading my photos a few files at a time (it took me a couple of days to complete my album), I started ordering prints. It didn't need that plug-in anymore so I reverted to my Firefox web browser.

I selected photos, chose the print size and print quality and the quantity of prints. I click the "recalculate" button and I get the total payable. Not bad.


Time to pay. Options:
  • pay over-the-counter at an LBC stall
  • pay via PayPlus using a Bancnet or Megalink ATM
  • pay via G-Cash... I wish! Para tapos na! But LBC, a G-Cash partner merchant, doesn't offer this payment option. *sigh*
Well, let's try the PayPlus option. Let's! Here's the response:
error '80020009'
Exception occurred.
/ver2/cart.asp, line 380
Hergs. Siya siya, sige, magpapaka-martyr ako. I will pay over the counter at one of the LBC stalls. I'll click the button to get some kind of receipt or online request so that I can print out my bill which I will pay for over-the-counter at LBC. Sige daw....
error '80020009'
Exception occurred.
/ver2/cart.asp, line 380
Why? Tell me, Why am I not surprised? I tried it on both Firefox and Internet Explorer. Same result = Insanity!

Ilang araw kong sinubukan, ilang beses hinanapan ng paraan, ilang oras ang ginugol, ilang buhok sa ulo ang na-bunot at heto lang ... error '80020009'? Ano'ng gagawin ko diyan, kakainin?

Why? Tell me, hu-wa-yyyy do I go through these lengths? I think it's time to go back to Pavilion 7. Siyemes!

Read: "Nagpadala sa LBC, Na-Buang", Ofoto, My Fotos
Abangan bukas: m-Commerce: Smart Money Revisited again (Part 2), sequel to ... uhmmm .... part 1, adbertisment
In da future: My adventures with Flickr, Picasa, Hello, Muvee etc.

ka edong
Mandaluyong boy married to Baliwag girl


Monday, July 04, 2005

My m-Commerce Study on

AIM grad finds micro-financing future in mobile commerce
By Erwin Lemuel Oliva (June 26, 2005)
Excerpts from

My m-Commerce Study was featured on Thanks to Erwin Oliva for writing the story and Heinz Bulos for telling Erwin about the study.

You'll find copies of the story at the following links:
* AIM grad finds micro-financing future in mobile commerce (Available while keeps the online copy)
* Saved copy of article on
* PDF file for easy printing
* Screen shot - Nasa front page ako ;-)



Edong SkypeWalker

I’ve used Skype a couple of times, mostly to talk to my sister in Australia. It works very well for people communicating across borders and across seas.

Edong SkypeWalkerMy first real conversation over Skype happened at Seattle’s Best at Rockwell via their Airborne Access WiFi connection. It was perrrrfect! My sister and I talked for almost an hour without interruptions. It was like a regular mobile phone call. A little noise or lag here and there but it was mostly good. Not to mention the savings compared to a regular IDD call.

If we had made that conversation over IDD, it would have cost us ... 50mins x 40cents/min = US$20 or Php1,100! On the other hand, I spent only P100 (for 1 hour WiFi access) for our Skype telebabad. Ang laking tipid, ‘di ba?

Another time my sister and I spoke, I was at school. We have free WiFi access there, so it didn’t cost a thing. But this time, there were noticeable lags in our conversation. I realized that the lags were caused by the photos I was sending to my sister. Apparently, when Skype is sharing the Internet bandwidth of your computer with other processes (other downloads, uploads, updates), the voice quality of the Skype conversation is affected.

It’s as if my sister’s voice is sometimes being stretched. Sometimes, there are a few split seconds that I don’t hear her.

That conversation with my sister was funny because she kept on commenting about the background noise. She asked “are those plates and spoons and forks?”. Uh huh, she heard it right. She was hearing the high frequency noise in the background while I had to shout out my words because she sometimes couldn’t hear me. That must have been due to my headset. I purposely bought a small headset so that it wouldn’t be too bulky when I put it in Kurdapia’s bag.

The last time I used Skype was when I spoke to my crazy friend in Vietnam. We passed around my headset as other classmates and schoolmates dropped in to say hi via Skype.

Edong SkypeWalker and his skype-mate: the British accent test-call girl!I haven’t been using Skype lately. Buti nalang I’ve outgrown my Skype fascination and have stopped calling that British lady phonepal for making test calls (click picture on left).

I haven’t tried using Skype on ordinary dial-up. But I’m quite sure it won’t be as good as using it via a LAN.

I’ll end by sharing a photo from an online friend, Warren Mira. If in some cases tech gets in the way, Warren’s story is one instance where we can take a break and let tech do some magic.

Read: Telebabad - ang pagbabalik, Our Weekend eSkype
Search Technobiography: Skype

Edong SkypeWalker


Friday, July 01, 2005

Hotspot Hunting: Podium

Last night, Maya and I were at Podium in Ortigas center. On my back was Fiona in her kunwari-hindi-laptop Samsonite backpack bag.

Maya asked me with a faint smile at the edge of her lips: "Meron kayang WiFi dito?"

I said knowingly: "I don't think so. Kung meron, eh 'di dapat may mga WiFi posters o stickers na nag-a-announce na hotspot ito."

Just then, we reached our dining place - a Filipino-Japanese resto at the 5th floor. There was a gentleman dining and he had his laptop on. He appeared to be web surfing.

Tonight's appetizer: Eat your words!

Before Maya could stop me, I blurted out audibly: "Naka-WiFi ka?"

The gentleman's eyes looked up, a boyish smile flashed and he replied, trembiling, as if I was a long lost friend: "Oo, full signal!"

Gentleman and I started to exchange notes, about how there's a hotspot too at SM Megamall yada yada yada...

He kept with his excited long-lost-friend tone. I maintained my faked-indifference as if the newly discovered hotspot didn't matter to me. In the meantime, Maya took the opportunity to download some updates.

We had dinner and didn't let Fiona get in the way. After dinner, we looked down from the 5th level to the lounge at the 2nd level. There was my newfound long-lost-WiFi-hunter-friend surfing away as a piano played a tune in the background.

Maya and I headed home. Another make-over hotspot-hunting mission accomplished.

Fade-in Mission Impossible theme: Charan charan charan charan chan-chan, Charan charan charan charan chan-chan ...

Read: Hotspot Hunting I, II, III
Search Technorati: Hotspot Hunting

Agent Edong
Moblogging on Brosia