Monthly archives of “September 2012

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Let’s put the evidence act into action

So let’s say someone in Malaysia actually was stupid enough to post something insulting Islam and it’s Prophet on his Facebook page as a status message. Then let’s say that same person claimed that his Facebook page was hacked.

Finally, we say there’s a huge backlash against this person on the internet, so even though the comment was deleted from Facebook, it has been screenshot-ed so many times, it’s now permanently etched online.

This is exactly the sort of hypothetical situation the newly amended Evidence act is supposed to address, yet for the most part it doesn’t. In fact, the case really isn’t hypothetical, it’s actually something going on right now, and it’s a great test-bed to see if indeed the evidence act would help us address these issues.

Gopinanth Jayaratnam from Klang, posted up a rather insulting statement online about Islam. Of course, a couple of people picked it up  and soon it went viral on Facebook. What followed was every bit as predictable as a bad hollywood movie, Police reports were lodged, the ‘suspects’ personal details were published online and soon a group calling itself the Jemaah Fisabilillah Klang, launched an actual attack on his house. The gate of his house was rammed into and the car parked in the compound was damaged. Fortunately, there was no report of bodily harm, but one can imagine that’s probably not too far away.

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One Visa files suit against TM : Is it a Human Rights abuse?

The Star today reported that a company called One Visa is suing Telekom Malaysia (TM) for providing telecom services and infrastructure to squatters on it’s land in Negeri Sembilan.

TM was alleged to have trespassed five pieces of One Visa’s land by supplying the telco services to the illegal occupiers of its land.

One Visa had sought RM23.07mil as special damages being the total rental value of the land based on current market value rates calculated from March 22, 2011 and continuing until cessation of the telco services and the date of removal of TM’s infrastructure from the land.

That’s right 23.07mil in ‘special’ damages for the TOTAL rental value of the land, because TM had supplied telco services to the illegal occupiers.

Now, I’m no lawyer and I’m not familiar with the case, So I cannot comment on the legality (or illegality) of the squatters staying on the land. What I can comment on though is the utter ridiculousness of the suit to sue TM for the full rental of the land just because TM had supplied telco services. That’s like charging your neighbour rental for your entire house value, just because his mango tree has over-grown into your garden.

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Setting up a Dlink DDNS for your Unifi Router

A Domain Name Server (DNS) is basically the address book of the world wide web. What it does in very simple terms is it converts a web address like into an Internet Protocol address like (this might look like garbage but it’s actually 4 numbers separated by a dot, and it’s these 4 numbers that uniquely define every machine on the internet).

It’s the Internet Protocol address that can actually get you to your destination. Think of it like the actual phone number of the person. It’s nice to know someone’s name, like Keith Rozario, but it means nothing in terms of contacting me if you don’t have my Phone Number. So if you wanted to contact me with just my name, you’d have to look for something called a ‘phone book’. In this case, the DNS is the phone book, that translates a name to a number, and the DNS is publicly available.So what is a Dynamic DNS? Well, that’s where the allocation from name to IP is dynamically allocated. For instance, the IP address of my website has remained static for the 1.5 years it’s been around. So the DNS allocation for my website is pretty much stable. Although I did recently change the web-host, but that’s another story.

However the IP address of my home Unifi connection changes everytime I restart my router, which is about once a week or so. If I wanted to add some sort of permanence to my connection, without splurging for expensive static IP packages, I could opt for a Dynamic DNS (or DDNS).

So let’s say I have a IP camera at home, that’s recording a video feed that I can view on my phone. If I connected my phone to the IP address directly, that wouldn’t be a good idea. If the connection dropped while I was away, or my house had an intermittent power cut, that forced the router to re-start (and hence change it’s IP), I would lose all connectivity to the IP camera, and my entire home network as well. This is because, I wouldn’t know what my home network IP address would be anymore, and hence have no way to contact it. It’s like changing my phone number, if you keep trying to call your old number you’d most probably get an error message, or wind up calling someone else.

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Why I stopped the Nuffnang Ads on my blog

About 2 months back, I posted up a nuffnang ad on my blog, and with reasons explaining why I felt the need to advertise. The guys from Nuffnang were pretty stand-up characters and I felt like I could trust them, so I begin to post Nuffnang ads and monitor that over time.

Unfortunately the results haven’t been so good, and after some reflection I decided not to port over the nuffnang ads when I migrated the blog over to a new hosting provider. It’s important to recognize that your experience with Nuffnang could be different, and I have no doubt that they do contribute significantly to some bloggers, but for me the relationship just wasn’t going anywhere and I wasn’t really getting any value out of the ads. So when I migrated my blog from Nearlyfreespeech to WPWebHost I decided not to port over the Nuffnang advertising widget–and here’s why?

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WPWebHost : WordPress Hosting in Malaysia from Exabytes

You may have noticed that my site recently got a spanking new design. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my previous wordpress theme (compositio by Design Disease) and my previous web host (the ever awesome, nearlyfreespeech), but there were 2 real compelling reasons for me to switch web host.

First, maintaining wordpress was taking a lot of time, this included the usual backups and updates and that was eating into time I could have spent researching other stuff or just plain blogging. Secondly, the site had grown both in size and visits, previously I received my first notch up the Google Page Rank, and now I’m a Page Rank 1 site (woo hoo!!). The additional traffic and storage cost were increasing to the point where it made more sense to have a fixed cost monthly payment than worry about the topping up my account (that being said, it would have still been cheaper to host on Nearlyfreespeech).

My first choice was dreamhost, but I’ve tried them before, and while they were good, they weren’t exactly out of this world. So I decided to look for a WordPress specific hosting service, these are web host that specialize in WordPress. They cover stuff like daily backups and offer free wordpress themes etc. Unfortunately, most WordPress host cost quite a bit, but with some google searches, I manage to come across a WordPress host that was well recommended, was at the right price point, and best of all–based in Malaysia.

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Ban Youtube in Malaysia?

Rais Yatim a Member of Malaysian Parliament and a Minister in Government, has threatened Youtube with legal action over their refusal to remove the video of Innocence of Muslims. Nevermind the fact that Youtube have tried their level best to restrict access to the video from Malaysian users, and also failing to recognize the fact that Youtube is merely a video sharing site.

You have to sympathize with Google, they’ve drawn the line the sand and they’re getting the most flak of anyone in this debacle. Most people seem to forget that it was a Youtube user (not Youtube itself) that created and uploaded the film. It also may have slipped your mind, that the video clip is available on other less prominent video sharing sites like Vimeo. Yet Google is sticking to it’s guns under enormous pressure not just from Muslim Governments but from it’s own Government to take down the offensive video. At the very least they deserve commendation for their courage in the face of adversity.

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Censoring Innocence of Muslims in Malaysia

The Malaysian government has requested that Google take down the video Innocence of Muslims, and Google has since complied. As of today, anyone trying to access the clip from a Malaysian IP address would see a screen that reads “This content is not available in your country due to a legal complaint. Sorry about that.”

The clip is most definitely offensive, and demeaning but what is quite obviously isn’t is–serious. The first thing anyone notices from the clip is that it’s of low quality, there are multiple versions of Malaysian Gangnam style that are made with far higher quality than the clip, yet this one particular clip has managed to create such an uproar that people have killed for it. I’m not defending the clip, or opposing it.

What I am against is Governments and Corporations coming together to censor something ‘on behalf’ of the people. What I am against is a ineffectual censorship, which instead of preventing people from viewing the clip, actually nudge them towards actively searching for it online.

In the end, we have to say that video clips don’t kill people–people kill people and  in my view the censoring of the clip is both ridiculously short-sighted and terribly ineffective.

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My Faulty Samsung Galaxy S3 has returned

Before my recent trip to Australia, my brand new Samsung Galaxy S3 failed on me. The speaker just went *kaput*.

Well not really *kaput*, but there was absolutely no sound coming out of it. Needless to say I was a bit frustrated, annoyed and just downright disappointed. This was an expensive top of the line phone, and it’s speakers shouldn’t be failing after barely 4 months.

So I called up Maxis and reported my predicament, and Maxis said I had two options, either send it back to them or send it directly to Samsung. I figured I might as well cut out the middleman and send the phone directly to Samsung.

So after a few calls and some planning, I found out that Samsung normal fix rate was 3 working days. Which wasn’t good enough for me as I had to fly off by the next day (shit happens), so I survived in Australia with a faulty phone whose alarm wasn’t working. Fortunately, my wife’s Iphone which I bought for her 2 years ago was still working perfectly.

After arriving back to Malaysia I went straight to the Samsung Service center in Digital Mall USJ (first floor) on a Saturday. The told me I’d be able to collect the phone within 3 working days, which worked out to Wednesday.

However, I got a call the following Tuesday afternoon informing me the phone was repaired and I could collect it directly from the service center. So I headed there I collected my now-working phone. So now my Galaxy S3 is working perfectly again.

Samsung took just 2 days to fix my faulty speaker :).

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How to Port Forward your Unifi Dlink Dir-615 router

dir-615Port Forwarding is a really simple concept, but a very important step you need to take if you want to remotely access the devices you have at home. For instance, if you have a Unifi connection connected to an always on desktop and you wanted to Remotely access your windows machine, you’d need to perform port forwarding on your router.

Similarly if you’ve just installed a new IP camera in your home, and want to access the camera while you’re on the road you’ll need to perform port forwarding on your router.

Port forwarding is a neccessary step in order to access your home devices from outside your home. If you want to access anything in your home remotely you’ll need to configure some sort of Port Forwarding, and here’s the why are how.

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Data Coverage Down Under

I’ve just come back from a fantastic 2 week long vacation in Australia, and I absolutely loved it. The weather was a bit cold for my Malaysian body (especially in blue mountains), but overall the holiday was a well deserved break from nearly 8 months of non-stop work ;).

The one thing I did notice about Australia though, was that data charges were quite exorbitant. I stayed at various Youth Hostel throughout Queensland and NSW and was surprised that they charged nearly AUD7 per day for Wi-Fi connectivity. Needless to say, I wasn’t too impressed with shelling out nearly RM25 per day for something I get free from even my local mamak.

It was the same nearly everywhere else, even their coffee joints and cafes didn’t offer free Wi-Fi, one explanation I came across was that Australia was geographically very distant from the rest of the world AND it was sparsely populated, so the cost of supplying connectivity to the country was very high. Therefore, these cost were reflected in the amount users paid to go online.
In Malaysia, Tune Talk offers 5 Sen/MB, which works out to roughly Rm25 for the same 500MB of data I got from Optus, Digi offers a 600MB for an RM75. Well below the nearly Rm100 I spent on my Optus Pre-paid. So instead of subscribing to the local Wi-Fi, I decided to spring for a mobile data package, in this case the Optus Pre-paid plan that cost AUD30, with that I got unlimited minutes, 250 minutes to landlines, unlimited sms and 500 MB of data. That’s a lot of money, considering I wasn’t bothered about the other stuff except the 500MB of data.