Wednesday, December 15, 2010

How to fix "Error: timestamp refused. Check system clock?"

For Barriorsquare on N900, you might stumbled with this error "Error: timestamp refused. Check system clock?" when you try to sign-in to you Foursquare account.
Reason - This is due to requiring all requests to have a timestamp in them, and that timestamp must be within 10 minutes of foursquare's server time. This error means that the timestamp that was sent with your request is out of this range. Check that your device's time is set as close to a reliable source as possible and try again.

So try to reset you clock in setting menu.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What It's Like to Own an Apple Product

I saw this hilarious comic from one of the post in The Oatmeal. Some people just couldn't resist the temptation of getting a new shoes. Well others can't resist to own one of those slick Apple product. Anywhere, click on the picture for the rest of the story. 

Blogger Improvement

For the past 3 or so months, there were several updates on Blogger features that lead into user experience improvement. So today I decided to use some the Blogger new features. As expected not only it changes how the blog looks and behave, it also overides all customization (personalization ) that I made.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

How to get the latest sources from subversion (SVN)

In software development, Subversion (SVN) is use to maintain current and historical versions of files such as source code, web pages, and documentation. Let say you need to work on a project that requires you to download the source code from the subversion. Here how it done...

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

"Twitter Genius"

A Craiglist's job listing posting caught my eye today. The role is as an
“expert” social media marketer for some sort of e-commerce startup. “I need someone who tweets in their sleep and updates their fb status before calling their mom on Mother’s Day,” the description reads. Wait until you see what the applicant need to do to apply for this kind of job.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Gesture computing is a current hip

A couple of weeks ago, I was asked to develop a device that can understand my hand gestures to accomplish certain task like taking photo, browsing and other task that normally you need a computer, PDA or handphone to accomplish that. This idea isn't new as I recalled, Microsoft did come out with their Surface device and Nintendo with their hand-wobling Wii several years back. Then I start to see numerous of similar product (prototype mostly) start to emerge.

Safari 4 dominates browser benchmark

ZDnet has tested out 7 leading browsers using SunSpider (a suite of JavaScript test) to measure which browser is the quickest. I guess the Safari 4 took the first place beating the other 6 browsers. That is surprising as I thought Google Chrome is the quickest.

Out of curiosity, I took the benchmark test for Safari browser on Mac OS X using the same SunSpider benchmarking tool. Surprisingly, my result is much faster (576.2ms) compared to ZDNet result (967ms). Maybe the internet connection speed has affect on the final result.

Regular Joe might say that why bother taking such benchmarking test? Browser is just browser. Well, the modern web application is heavily loaded with Javascript for various purposes (AJAX, rating, behind the scene things). So using a browser with faster Javascript execution time might come handy. Of course this is not applied to me as I use 5 different browsers in daily basis. For me each browser has their own pros,  cons and some set of tools to complete my daily job. Hunters uses different bullet and weapon to hunt different kind preys don't they?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

A year ends

As 2009 set sail to the end, I think this is the longest year I ever felt. So many events set place this year; witness betrayal at first hand, lost a job, get broke, found few other jobs, new baby boy, said goodbye to old friends and said hello to new ones. With so much to do to keep on living, this year is the most productive year and the most dramatic ever.

In single year I had to take up responsibility all the jobs that left to me. From sales to project manager down to delivery boy with the risk of not getting any paid at all.

How do I survived? I don't know myself. I guess the set of skill that I acquired from very long career helps a lot. And not to forget the support from my family, wife, kids, mom & dad, brothers & sis.

I don't know what is coming in 2010 but it doesn't matter. In the end, what matters the most is my family.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Twitter as marketing tool

I haven't blogging for months(feel like ages), but this guy/girl from Twitter manage to drag my browser to blogger posting form just to share his idea/tactic on fully utilize Twitter as his/her marketing tool.

Well, what the so called faclets does is twitting about a fact in daily basis, link the fact with related books in Amazon website, search some of the keywords in Twitter to find related entry or user, and finally he/she just follows all the matching user results. And as the result, all the user that he/she follows will or most likely will follow back and probably some of them would buy the suggested book that faclets posted on the link. Pretty neat and slick. Perhaps this is one of the "clear" example on how to use Twitter to market your product.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

How to restore Windows Vista Sidebar

Recently I created a gadget for Windows Vista Sidebar. It works as it suppose to but yesterday the sidebar refuse to start during start up or directly execute the application. Luckily this not the first encounter, apparently it's becoming popular issue among other unlucky Vista's user. I wonder if the problem will be passed on to Windows 7, 8, 9, 10...or forever. Some people wouldn't care if it works or not, I know because I would. but the thing is, I need to show the gadget it to my client. Anyway here is the solution...

Looking at the solution from Microsoft (KB963010), it is easy enough to solve this. They even provide the fix tool. But if you want to fix it manually, pop up the command prompt and run each of this command:

Regsvr32 atl.dll
Regsvr32 "%ProgramFiles%\Windows Sidebar\sbdrop.dll
Regsvr32 "%ProgramFiles%\Windows Sidebar\wlsrvc.dll

It should fix the issue in no time.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Stored Procedure Manic

Since I joined a new company as web application developer, I was amazed on the amount of stored procedure usage in multiple MSSQL databases to support a single system. There is one database which had the largest number of overall stored procedure created. Over 2000 ++ scripts with total size of 11 MB. The best of all there is no single manual or documentation available to map the stored procedure to the application itself. And no programmer to refer to. Damn. This is going to be a mental strain to any system noob. I'm almost reaching the limit for just in 5 days.

When the management set a dateline to complete a task, it is understandable that the result must be achieved no matter what. To be surprised, one day, during the assignment period, the MD directly ask my data enhancer senior colleague what is the progress and what is the result should be achieved that day. He took a long pause not knowing what, when & how to answer the question. I tried to help by explaining the current situation. The MD get upset and ask us the detail action plan and present to him in 30 minutes.

The objective is clear but when the time is too short I had to use every resources that I had, which is time. I spent 72 hours straight to just understand the flow. But to reprogram the whole module it might take 1 or 2 more months. Which is not an option. The logical way to solve it is to contact the previous programmer and ask which script could solve the issue. But for some reason that is not an option too. So I'm stuck and back too nothing. I have no choice but to dig the 2000++ stored procedure script to find the actual script that could solve everything. Luckily I found it after spending another 24 hours digging the script. Sigh. This could be one of the Worse Than Failure (WTF) story in my IT profession life.

I know I've been paid to do the job but 24 hours a day for straight two weeks to make sure the job is done? Come on I'm not 25 anymore. At this point I'm not sure this is the right job for me. I wonder how long I would last in that company.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Connecting Ubuntu 8.10 with Atheros Wireless Driver

This setting was a major nuisance to me. I search all over the net for a working solutions. From Madwifi to Ndiswrapper but still, nothing works on my Presario C700 unit. I even fully updated Intrepid release. Thanks for that, the system hit by kernel panic and I need to reinstall the whole OS again. But the working solution is just under my nose. Read on...

Well, not really my nose, it's documented in the Ubuntu help page, under the WifiDocsDriverAtheros topic.

My unit preference is Compaq Presario C700 with Atheros AR242x chip and Ubuntu 8.10 (fresh install). I connect to internet through ethernet cable (wireless is disable duh). If you have similar setup and I assume you know how to set your repository, this might work. This is how I done it:
  1. Update only the essential part. Open the terminal and run this command.
    sudo apt-get install build-essential
  2. Deactivate the installed Atheros Driver. Since we're going to get the new one, disable the default driver which is auto-install during installation.
    System > Administration > Hardware Drivers and click the "deactivate" button.
  3. Run this command
    sudo reboot
  4. You now need to get the backport module. After the reboot, run this command
    sudo apt-get install linux-backports-modules-intrepid-generic
  5. Run this command
    sudo reboot
  6. For some other unit the wireless might be working now. But mine is not working yet. This may be the result of a conflict with either ath_hal or ath_pci, or ath5k might be blaclisted somewhere. So let isolate the ath_hal & ath_pci first. Run this command on the terminal:
    sudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist
    and add the following lines to the bottom of the file:
    blacklist ath_hal
    blacklist ath_pci
    save the blacklist file
  7. Run this command
    sudo reboot
  8. By now my unit is able to detect wireless connection and manage to connect using WPA2 Personal pass key. But if your unit still doesn't, the last possible cause is the ath5k being blacklist somewhere, posibbly in modprobe.d. So run this command in terminal:
    grep -r "ath5k" /etc/modprobe.d/
    You just need to comment lines that have "blacklist ath5k" and then run this command:
    sudo reboot
Hopefully by now your unit is able to detect and connect to any wireless connection. Good luck and remember patient is a virtue.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

From Windows 7 Beta to Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex

The story begin when my notebook (Compaq Presario C700) had an overheating problem. Originally I installed a WindowsXP pro in this unit. Everything when well for 5 months. But then whenever I run a movie or flash application the system automatically shutdown. I try to search the problem source for months but still the problem remain. So what should I do? Read on...

It seems that the notebook can't hold too much concurrent process in one time. Even though formating with a fresh new OS is the last option in my recovery list but I had no choice. Then, Windows released the Windows 7 Beta to the public. I've read all the review (almost) and saw some cool and awsome stuff in their demo video. Even though I knew that it will last until August 2009 and the minimum RAM is 1GB, still I decided to give it a try.

The first distinct different change is the taskbar and much improved on UAC and desktop windows experience which is way better than Vista or XP. The rest was just almost the same like Vista. I have nothing against this new Windows 7 but it doesn't improved my experience with the problematic Compaq C700 notebook. So the quest continue.

The next possible move is to get a less stressful processor & RAM eater operating system. My best bet is the Ubuntu 8.10 Intrepid Ibex with the Linux kernel (2.6.27-11 as in my grub boot menu.lst). I used to play around with Gutsy Gibbon (v7.10) in VMWare. I just love the way they named their release which is using an adjective and an animal. If you notice, this code names are in alphabetical order since Breezy Badger.

I personally think that you can customized this OS into anything that you want without burning holes in your budget. It does provide an alternative program for each Windows Office tools and it's almost FREE. But you must not be fooled. FREE in Linux realm comes with some "price". For a noobs, it is just like entering a twilight zone. Each release or even update comes with a risk of unworking driver or worst "kernel panic". I guess the best way is to separate the system partition with your data partition and keep the best setting for your unit. Every problem has possible solutions in various forum boards. I guess the Open-Source community just love to share or tell their own story. Sometimes I find myself reading too much suggestion for a single problem. Imagine if normal user had to face such nuance problems.

But for the sake of Compaq Presario C700 that I have here, now I can almost eliminate the overheating problem. At least I can watch the entire movie in full screen mode in peace with no auto shutdown.

P/S: I wonder what is the best linux application with functionality at par with Photoshop.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Linux System Admin Tips

I'm not an avid Linux user but there is no harm learning some of tricks that only the experienced Linux admin would know. Check out this tips from Mike Chirico. It has 200 over of Linux tips and tricks. From setting and keeping the correct time on your computer, permanently deleting documents with shred, making files "immutable" so that root cannot change or delete, setting up more than one IP address on a single NIC, monitering users and processes, setting log rotate to monthly with 12 months of backups in compressed format, creating passwords for Apache using the htpasswd command, common Perl commands, using cfengine, adding users to groups, finding out which commands are aliased, query program text segment size and data segment size, trusted X11 forwarding, getting information on the hard drive including the current temperature, using Gnuplot, POVRAY and making animated GIFs, monitoring selective traffic with tcpdump and netstat, multiple examples using the find command, getting the most from Bash, plus a lot more.

Another article that I manage to digest from the same author is "Breaking Firewalls with OpenSSH and PuTTY". A very interesting reading material. The article shows you how remote Linux and Windows users can gain access to firewalled samba, mail, and http servers without monkeying the firewall. However the author said that those steps only applicable if you have a valid account on all targeted servers. In other words, to get a valid account is another art of hacking.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Level of Education Required to Read My Blog

One of the best practice in SEO is to deliver your content as clear and precise enough based on your target audience. To do that you will need to hire a suitable copy writer and start building the content using your guideline. Unfortunately not everyone can afford to hire one. But now there is an online tool than can help you rate your content and match it with the level of education required to understand your content.

I tested the tools several times and here are what the range of result that I get.

After done playing with it, I conclude that this is merely a tool to get the traffic to the site. Why? Because if the webpage is in other language beside English, it simply rate it as GENIUS. Well the tool itself is another practice in SEO.