Sunday, August 10, 2008

Amazing Photos of Beijing Summer Olympics 2008 Opening Ceremony


Here are several images and photos of the opening ceremony on August 8, 2008. The pictures are amazing, elegant and unforgetable. I collected the pictures from various sources in the Internet. I posted them in 2 blogs, the forst one is in TeknoHikmah, and the other one in The World Viewed from Samarinda. Enjoy...

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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Samarinda City At A Glance


This is a glance of Samarinda, the small city in East Kalimantan Province, where I live and write all these blogs... Write me if any of you wants to know more about it.

Samarinda is the capital of the Indonesian province of East Kalimantan (Kalimantan Timur) on the island of Borneo. The city lies on the banks of the Mahakam River. As well as being the capital, Samarinda is also the most populous city in East Kalimantan with a population of 562,463 (2000) and as such is used by many as a gateway to the more remote regions of the province such as Kutai Barat, Kutai Kartanegara and East Kutai. Reaching these areas usually involves travel by river as the most efficient means. Although it has status as the capital of kalimantan Timur Province, some of government public service centre is located in Balikpapan, such as Police, Indonesian Army District VI of Tanjung Pura, and Pelabuhan Indonesia (Port Transportation).

Transport into Samarinda itself is facilitated by an airport, Temindung and a port, however, there are plans to relocate both the airport and port soon.

The Mahakam River flows 980 km from the highlands of Borneo, district Long Apari to its mouth in Makassar Strait. The city of Samarinda, the provincial capital of East Kalimantan, lies along the river 48 km (30 mi) from the river mouth.

East Kalimantan (Indonesian: Kalimantan Timur abbrv. Kaltim) is the second largest Indonesian province, located on the Kalimantan region on the east of Borneo island. The resource-rich province has two major cities, Samarinda (the capital and a center for timber product) and Balikpapan (a petroleum center with oil refinery). Ever since Indonesia opened its mineral and natural resources for foreign investment in 1970s, East Kalimantan province has experienced major boost of timber, petroleum and other exotic forest products. The state-owned petroleum company Pertamina has been operated in the area since it took control oil refinery from the Royal Dutch Shell company in 1965.

The population is a mixture of people from the Indonesian archipelago with Dayaks and Kutai as indigenous ethnic groups living in rural areas. Prominent other migrant ethnic groups include Javanese, Chinese, Banjarese, Bugis and Malays, of which mostly live in coastal areas.

East Kalimantan heavily depends on earth resources activity such as oilfield exploration, natural gas, as well as coal and gold mining. Balikpapan has an oil refinery plant that was primarily built by Dutch governance before World War II, destroyed during World War II, and rebuilt by Indonesia Governance.

Other developing economic sectors includes agriculture and tourism. East Kalimantan has several tourist destination such as Derawan Islands in Berau Regency, Kayan Mentarang National Park ini Nunukan, Crocodile Husbandry in Balikpapan, deer husbandry in Penajam, Dayak's (native Kalimantan people) Pampang Village in Samarinda and many others.

The main problem to developing economic growth is lack of transportation infrastructure. Transportation depends on traditional boats connecting coastal cities and areas along main river, Mahakam River.

Source: Wikipedia

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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Google & Phone Industry


I guess this issue will be an important piece in the future. Google is always interesting to watch. Every move it makes will play a significant change in the industry. The latest buzz is about Google taking part in a auction of the 700MHz wireless spectrum in the US. I cut and paste Don Reisinger's article in CNET Blog which is sharp and easy to read.

Could Google kill the cell phone industry?
July 20, 2007 11:08 AM PDT

In case you haven't been paying attention, the old 700MHz wireless spectrum is up for auction by the federal government. And under the veil of touting an "open" platform, Google CEO Eric Schmidt announced that the company will participate in the Federal Communications Commission auction for the bandwidth--with a few minor requests for the FCC: open applications for users; open devices that will work with whichever network provider customers choose; open services that would allow for third-party resellers to acquire wireless services on a wholesale basis; and open networks, which would allow third parties, such as Internet service providers, to interconnect at any feasible point within the 700MHz licensee's wireless network. Not bad for a reported $4.6 billion deal, huh?

And while this story has already been skillfully reported on, I couldn't help but wonder what Google has up its sleeve. So, after some deliberation, here are my thoughts (let's see yours in the discussion).

With full leasing ownership of the 700MHz spectrum, Google will try to effectively cripple the cell phone industry. Before you scoff and say this is a bunch of garbage, consider this: Google will offer the $4.6 billion only if the government agrees to the terms above. And perhaps the most compelling of those terms is that Google is requesting "open devices" that will work on the "open networks." In other words, Google wants to create the ability for companies (and most likely itself) to create devices that will seamlessly connect to the broadband spectrum. Why can't one of those devices be a phone?

Whether you realize it or not, Google's bread and butter is advertising. The company doesn't need to charge money for its services because the advertising will bring home the bacon. If you have ever used Picasa or Google 411, you know what I mean. Service plans and contracts are of no use to Google--it doesn't have the time to deal with those petty issues. But if Google is anything, it's competent and self-assured. Not only does the company know what it's doing, it does it better than any other organization.

Even more compelling is the nature of the relationship between Google and telecommunications companies. Not only do they basically hate each other, they sit on directly opposite sides in the debate for Net neutrality. Simply put, I think Google would love to significantly damage these companies.

So you heard my justification, now I'll tell you how it'll work. If the FCC agrees to the terms outlined above, Google will definitely win the auction. Once its wins, its executives will soon realize (as if they haven't already) that this spectrum can go through walls and reach just about anywhere. Even better, it'll create a speedy broadband connection.

Within no time, Google will announce that wireless will be made available to the public through its system. After all, it did it in San Francisco, why won't it do it all over the country? In effect, Google would run a "third broadband pipe."

Once the company announces the wireless broadband to the nation, it will immediately announce that Google Phone everyone has been talking about. The Google Phone will work specifically with the Google system (kind of like Skype) and will be free of charge. The only fee to the consumer is the cost of buying the phone, which can be done over the Google checkout system from online retailers or at fine brick-and-mortar retailers nationwide.

As soon as the phone is released, people will be tossing their iPhones, Razrs and every other cell phone into the nearest river. Why pay all that money for a phone when you can have the same kind of service for free?

Now we have to solve the mystery of how Google will make money. To be honest, I don't think it'll be too difficult. Google thrives on using services it doesn't charge for, and why should this be any different? I'm sure you will see advertising when you start up the phone, but most of the benefits from this system will be earned on the Internet, where people will be lauding the company for all it has done to move the industry forward. In a matter of months, Google would practically control Internet advertising. And by giving people free Internet access on the phones, guess where the default home page will be pointing?

As soon as Google starts this system, AT&T and Verizon will lead the charge against this "anticapitalist" system and lobby the government for all it's worth. But with no debt and coffers of money for rainy days, Google will remind the men and women in Congress to check their pocket and look at the name on their new do-it-all phone. That should change their minds quite quickly.

So there it is--my prediction of what Google will do with the 700MHz spectrum. Not only will I enjoy my free go-anywhere phone use, I'll love it when I walk into Verizon and AT&T to tell them I'll never go back.

Say what you will, but don't be surprised if the cell phone industry starts sweating bullets when Google wins that auction.

Now it's your turn, what do you think Google will do with the spectrum?

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Sunday, July 01, 2007

Trying Joost from Samarinda, Indonesia


Affected by the hype of the next generation TV called Joost, I decided to look over the website and see what I can get. First impression was bad, I have to get an invitation from other person to be able to try the beta version. Shoot... who will be able to give me one? Who else to turn to? Google of course... I search for Joost invitation and I get many links providing invitation, mostly from blogs. Surprisingly, from a hidden link inside that you can't find from Joost front page, I found a page that you can get the invitation instantly by typing your email address and woosh I got invited... fool...

Joost need to be installed in your PC, just like IBM Second Live or Google Earth. I installed it, and its said that my memory was not enough, Joost need 512 MB while I only have 190 MB. But it said I can still proceed and try it. Yes, the installation was completed even though I got less memory than required.

Then came the showdown. Using the ADSL Telkom Speedy, a nation wide ISP promised to deliver 384 Kbps, I start to use Joost, a full screen TV with crisp picture, unlike the previous "fake TV" on PC the can only provide blurred picture in a very tine screen. The interface was great, very Mac-like design. Lots af channels already available, including CNN that I tried.

But... but... the picture failed to stream smoothly... I think, the biggest problem might be my Internet connection. The application ran beautifully, but the picture stream is bad. Can't watch it at all. And... I quit trying, but not yet uninstalling the apps yet. Wanna try using it at night when usually the connection is slightly better.

Well, from a glimpse of Joost that I just used, I really think that this concept would go all the way and eventually will shape the future of TV. Let's see...

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Monday, December 25, 2006

YouTube and The Men Behind


It's really inspiring to see how tech world has changed many ordinary people into superstars with huge wealth... Imagine having a very simple idea and then creating it into a usable form, take it out to the market, then 21 months later, you get paid for $ 1.65 billion. That' how YouTube story is all about...

Steve Chen, 28, and Chad Hurley, 29, two of the three founders of YouTube (the other, Jawed Karim, went to grad school last year).

I gathered some information from the Internet to get to know more about them...

CHAD MEREDITH HURLEY has the lanky and languorous carriage of a teenager who just rolled out of bed. He wears a stubble beard over a complexion that doesn't see enough sun, and he has a habit of pushing his chin-length hair back from his forehead so that by the end of the day it's a bit oily and Gordon Gekko-ish.

Raised in the southeastern Pennsylvania town of Birdsboro, Chad is the middle child of Donald, a financial consultant, and JoAnn, a schoolteacher. He was an arty kid, always watercoloring and sculpting, which is not to say he ran with the artsy crowd. There is nothing affected or capering about Chad—his temperature runs so low he comes off at first as a dullard—and it's easy to imagine him as a slightly introverted, earnest boy trying to sell artwork (not lemonade) from his front lawn, as he did in an unsuccessful venture that taught him the difference between art and commerce.

Chad was unusual in that his artistic proclivities coincided with an interest in business and technology. In ninth grade, he built an amplifier that won third place in a national electronics competition. By the time he was in college, he would hole up for hours online, doing those things boys do these days—studying Web design, playing games, experimenting with animation. He did not come equipped with a sense of entitlement or snobbery; his brother Brent, 27, told me that to earn money during one summer in college, Chad joined a pyramid-marketing scheme for knife sets. "He would come over to our friends' houses and cut through a soda can or something," says Brent. "One of our family friends, they joke now, 'Hey, you sold us these knives and look at you now.'"

STEVE SHIH CHEN has always been something of a risk taker. He left the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign a semester and a half early to work for PayPal. His family was wary: "We told him it was risky; he just had a few months left" in college, says his brother Ricky, 26. "But he was determined to give it a shot." Steve was drawn to PayPal partly because several U. of I. alums worked there, including PayPal co-founder Max Levchin, who in turn was eager to hire Steve because of his educational background. Steve had attended not only U. of I.—which has a well-respected computer-science program—but also the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA), a state-funded boarding school. "IMSA plus U. of I. is generally a very winning formula," says Levchin, who says the combination produces "hard-core smart, hardworking, nonspoiled" young engineers who are perfect for start-ups. "The kind of people that imsa attracts are the kind of people very prone to choose their own path," he says. They also grow up quickly, since IMSA feels more like a college than a high school. It's coed and highly competitive, the schoolwork is college level, and kids spend every possible second on the Internet.

Which isn't to say Steve is a geek—at least not an irretrievable geek. Chad gets more attention for his laid-back cool look, but Steve is actually more fun to hang out with, particularly since he started drinking a year and a half ago (right around the time YouTube was founded; he jokingly wonders if there's a connection). Steve seems to wear the responsibilities of the company more lightly than Chad, and he has absorbed less of the heavy p.r. coaching. Steve, for instance, is willing to speculate about what his wealth might mean for him: "It's funny, you know, Chad and I will probably, are definitely at YouTube for the next five years. But you do start wondering, What's next? Now that you have some cash, and it's like, Well, if I could live in any city, where would I live?"

Do you want to be a billionaire too?

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