Wednesday, May 30, 2007

WordPress 2.2

The latest version Getz is out for nearly two weeks now.   I have just tried automatic upgrade with one of my dummy test site here.

All my plugins work fine and I still want to watch it for a while before moving up.    There were too many minor versions recently and I don't bother upgrading whenever a new version is out.

Monday, May 28, 2007

svchost, Windows automatic update failure

Windows [tag]Automatic update[/tag] is sort of like your regular health check.    What if your doctor who does your regular check isn't reliable?    This is what happened to the recent Windows automatic update.    If you are running Windows XP like me you may find the process [tag]svchost[/tag] eating up 100% CPU usage for prolonged period.    That's was like very high blood pressure for no reason.    Your computer may become unresponsive and even hang up.

You need this pill (id 927891) and this drug (id 932494) to cure this high blood pressure.    I took these then later found that I have missed 8 Nos of updates of 38.2Mb in total size.

I thought the high blood pressure was due to a virus which I did find one called Generic4.pjr of Trojan Horse type but that wasn't very harmful.

Saturday, May 26, 2007


I watched 2 movies during my trip to Japan.    The Pursuit of Happyness was a bit disappointing.    I read critics earlier and I thought there would be coverage of Mr Gardner's career struggles after has has started his own business.    There are touching moments, no doubt, but overall I was expecting more than that.

On the return trip I picked something lighter which was Music and Lyrics.    Everything that Hugh Grant does is predictable of course but the attraction this time is the music.    I now understand when you get older it's easy to live in one's shadow of the past.    Having a break through in life is easily said then done.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Finishing Sophie's World

I started reading this book back in February.    I went pretty fast at the start and bookmarked many pages which I should return to revisit.    I stopped at around 3rd quarter knowing how the story would end.    I was wrong as the ending was well written as it talked about the modern world of our time.

I finally finished the whole book during my trip to Wuxi this week.    I'm sure I'll have to read this again in due course.

I'm moving on to "A History of God" by Karen Armstrong.    It's about 4,000 year quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam.    I see this as a study on Western Culture for me rather than a book on Christianity or theology.

Friday, May 18, 2007


[tag]CSS[/tag] is "must learn" for template design.    To learn what's ahead of you check CSS3 out.    They have a CSS selectors test there which is very interesting.

There are also very good expert advices here in SMASHING, check them out.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Old City, Tongli


If you don't have a sensitive nose and will not take a close look at the almost stagnant water this old city of more than 100 years is a nice place to spend few hours between meals.

The sun was pretty hot today but it was cool and comfortable walking along the canals, sidewalks and visiting grand houses that were once residence of local celebrities.     These are really big houses and I wonder in those days how frustrated that would be looking for family members in such a big area.

The place is centrally managed and entrance fee is RMB80.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Tongli Lake



This is the view looking out from the bay window of a resort hotel in Suzhou China. This hotel is pretty new and I see very few customers today. This place is about one and a half hour drive from Wuxi airport where we landed this afternoon. Internet access from the room is absolutely free.

This came as a surprise to me as this is not in the heart of the city and this is supposed to be a resort hotel and not for business. This is a big contrast to Seoul which I went last year. Korea is supposed to be at the pole position amongst Asian countries with respect to Internet and digitization but I had to pay a huge charge for Internet connection.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Facts and Perceptions

There are no facts only perceptions, which philosopher said this I don't remember.    This is very true as I grow older and have seen enough illusions.

I have driving license for more than 20 years.    I have driven many roads and suddenly I realize that certain roads I don't recognize.    It isn't because I am sick in the mind.     I was just in a different seat of a car or in a bus or walking rather than driving.    The physical surrounding is essentially the same but my focus has changed and my mind wasn't exactly doing the same thing when I'm going through the scenes in a different way.

What have we missed in life?    During the day we argued with people because we stand in a different position.    Are we in fact have agreements on certain facts that have always been there but simply perceived differently due to the differing positions?

Sometimes I wonder how much we know about ourselves due to the fact that in this sensory world we have been so much deceived by perceptions either created deliberately to deceive others or due to our inability to comprehend the truth.    In analogy we are a computing device connected to millions of sensors which can't be calibrated and signals have been so much corrupted that the software inside can't possibly produce unbiased simple yes or no answer.

I wouldn't be surprised that people are easily changing their position like a flip-flop in a society like this.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Google cheats?

You can't do without searching the web these days.    Have you ever clicked to the last page of the search results?

I searched for something today and Google returned 576,000 results.    I clicked, one page at a time, to the last page which showed results 851-858 and I saw, as usual, "...repeat the search with the omitted results included...".    So I clicked that link and I have this time 579,000 results.

Again I clicked to the end but this time I could only get to 991-1000 results then there was nothing more showing, not even the "...repeat the search..." link.

Where are the other 578,000 results promised?

Research revealed that most people found their answers within the first and a half page.    Do they just fake a large number randomly?

jQuery - collapsible sidebar menu

Habari comes with jQuery. Making collapsible sidebar menu doesn't need other dHTML tricks as in my other site. There is a good example here to follow.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Show information about the currently activated theme

In WP normally you hardcode information about the current theme showing link to author's site, version and name etc. Information is stored in the CSS file of that WP theme. In Habari information is stored in a xml file in the theme folder and you could allow users of your theme to extract information from there.

Class ThisTheme extends Theme
function show()
$activetheme_name = Options::get('theme_dir');
$thistheme_path = HABARI_PATH.'/user/themes/'.$activetheme_name;
$thistheme_info = simplexml_load_file($thistheme_path.'/theme.xml');
$output = "This Theme: ".$thistheme_info->name;
$output .= " ".$thistheme_info->version." by ";
$output .= "[a href=\"".$thistheme_info->url."\"]".$thistheme_info->author."[/a]";
$output .= " for ".$thistheme_info->template_engine;
echo $output;

Copy the above into your theme.php file of your theme and add [?php ThisTheme::show(); ?] to your footer perhaps on a new line.

The theory of the opposite


This "theory of the opposite" isn't my original, see cover of this book I just bought.    You may or may not agree after reading this book and I think this is highly philosophical if you really want to understand this.

To make it simple I would say this theory stands because the world has changed, everything around you has changed, I have changed and everything logical could be illogical.    Sensible approach could be complete nonsense.    The jargon these days is 360 degree, have you ever considered all options around an issue every time you make a decision?

Most people go for the obvious solution, e.g. you want to be a Doctor so study well and go to medical school.    Even worse a lot of people don't know what their ultimate goals are.    You get wrong answer to wrong question asked.   When I was young I simply didn't know how to ask the mirror the right questions or to challenge my own desires, this example again "...why do you want to be a Doctor?"    Things, concepts, thoughts, directions were put to us by our government, parents, society, schools, peer and books that others have chosen for us... etc without us having to learn how to determine our goals and the proper ways to get them.

Do you want to be another cookie out of the mould?

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Download for Smarty theme - Barebone

The download is available from this page or straight from here.

This theme is for testing/trying only it doesn't really work because 'page-selector' has been commented out. I'm waiting for geeks out there to show me how.

There are couple of issues as to assigning template variables, again that's currently beyond my capability so again I'm anxiously waiting for solution.