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Showing posts from 2008


It's been a while since I last blogged -- and I know it's been becoming a cliche. There has been a lot of things going on, lots of which are personal and concerns much of my day to day chores and tasks. Now I'm twittering more instead of actually writing long reflective posts. And then it hit me: I haven't been stepping back and looking at my life as much as I used to. Part of this "not stepping back" has brought me much calm -- I don't get as depressed as I used to especially with what's been going on around me at different levels. I feel much more comfortable now of where I am currently in my life, and I feel much more at ease with who I am and who I have become. Keeping my head down and charging on has given me the chance to concentrate on the smaller things; enough to allow me to look at the bigger picture and assess really how far I've gone and how much farther I can go. What this once in a while blogging has allowed me to do is to give mysel

Swimming Again

After a good swim and a lot of things going through my mind, I've confirmed it. If you have a problem you can't solve right away then leave it alone for a while -- it may resolve itself on its own. Of course, that's barring any urgent requirements. I'd like to write/talk more about it, but I'd rather sleep this one through. I'm just giving this blog some love. CHill.

Was At BarCamp Manila Last Night

I'm just blogging a bit to let everyone know that I was at BarCamp Manila last night where I did a 7-minute presentation of the C++ Networking Library . I'd love to write about more it, but I've got no time yet. More later. CHill.

News Travels Fast!

Upon reading about the news regarding Lawrence Fishburn replacing William Petersen on CSI, I did a quick Google search and was surprised that indeed Lawrence did replace him -- even in Google Search Results! Talk about Internet Speed! :P CHill!

Reading List (Aug. 2008)

So I've picked up reading again, and this time I'm focusing on reading (and buying) books about investing and business. I feel that even though I've been trying to break the family trend of starting and owning businesses, I have that entrepreneurial knack in my blood. I'm thinking instead of trying to fight it, I'm going to learn more about it and maybe someday tough it out as an entrepreneur myself. To arm myself with knowledge I know I will need to someday be that entrepreneur and to cushion myself (and eventual family perhaps) by securing my financial status (in the present and in the future), I went to the nearest PowerBooks and got myself the following books this weekend: The Little Book on Common Sense Investing by John Bogle The One Minute Entrepreneur by Ken Blanchard, et al The Long Tail by Chris Anderson So far I've read both "The Little Book on Common Sense Investing" and "The One Minute Entrepreneur" and I've

25 years and my life is still...

... trying to get up that great big deal of hope -- for a destination. Or so the song goes. Yeah, growing older seems to always be some kind of a deal. But this is the first time I'm actually not celebrating it in any fashion similar to what I have done in past birthdays. Later today, I'm going to be spending a day with my girlfriend -- and I'm going to try that for a change. If all else fails I might hold a party of some sort some day. It definitely is not going to be today though. Happy birthday to me. CHill.

The Dark Knight

Deserves all the awards for movies ever made. Seriously. I think, if you're ever going to watch two movies in your entire life, you should watch "Batman Begins" and "The Dark Knight". That's how much I wouldn't mind recommending both films to everyone. The mix of mythology and real-life social dynamics cannot be depicted any better in films about super-heroes and super-villains. Heath Ledger should get an Oscar. May he rest in peace. CHill.

Wireless Broadband -- Miracle of the Mobile World

A few years ago, I would only dream about the scenario I had just gotten through. I think it's really enlightening when some of your idle 'what-ifs' would come true someday. And up to now, thanks to the miracle that is affordable wireless broadband Internet, I am able to get online and be part of the global community literally wherever I am within wireless signal strength. And in the country like the Philippines, that's practically *everywhere*. I can't share a lot about what specifics happened that required me after having dinner with a handful of officemates to get online as soon as possible. But what I can share is that I didn't have to look for a single wired Internet connection to get online. In a matter of minutes, I was up -- the mobile person that I am -- and literally engaging a team of people both just a few kilometers away and half the world away. Everybody in the team was within reach of each others' fingertips, it's bone chilling to think


People still read my postings on Multiply -- and comment on them! That's why I've been missing out on the traffic that my posts are generating (somehow). So just to let you know, I post this on my original blog: . Not that I have anything against Multiply, I've just been wondering where have all the readers gone. ;) CHill!

The Week

This is the week before my birthday and I still have no concrete plans. Right now I want to reach out to people (still) reading this blog for ideas as to what might be good to do on your 25th birthday that you will remember for a good long time. Things I've done for my birthday before are: Swimming Parties -- all nighters, over-nighters, and binge-drinking parties by the poolside. This still appeals to me, but it gets tired fast. House Parties -- having guests and family over at the house, binge eating and drinking, and then passing out one way or another. Not fun, not healthy, and not much to remember. Night Outs -- dinner with friends at a posh place, maybe Karaoke or Videoke before/after. Might do this again, but it does get a little tired as well. So if you have ideas, I have a few days to collect feedback and suggestions before I finally decide on what to do (or whether to do anything at all). CHill.

One Week, One Year

In a week I will turn 25. This is a significant number for me for a few reasons not only because of personal reasons byt also of popular reasons. First, it marks the first quarter of my life having passed me by. And what have I to show for it? Not much actually. But to me the experiences I've lived through and the learning I've gone through are worth more than this lifetime I've already lived. Now it's a matter of putting this experience and learning to good use. Second, it marks one of the personal milestones I've set of myself since I was 14. I haven't quite started on a few things yet I've planned (that family and the degree to mention a couple) but I am working on some other things (which I intend not to mention). Third, this marks the 25 times people around me will be celebrating my life -- and that I'm still alive. I think it's actually going to be a sad day when people stopped caring when you've turned one year older. Thank God for family

Missing Old Times

Yesterday I had a great time having dinner with a couple of my friends from College. All I can say really is that I am starting to miss the old times when problems were not too grave and time just seemed a lot more easier to cherish. Now the issues are different and the challenges of a different class. Somehow I just have to start getting sentimental, and just trudge along. Nonetheless, looking back is something worth doing from time to time. CHill.

The Best Things In Life

I get reminded once in a while why I work so hard and why I keep working harder and trying to improve myself. I get reminded that the best things in life are free -- not necessarily without cost, but more because the best things in life do not come from what you do but what you get from being with people you love and love you. Lunch was a good time being with friends -- and being able to foot the bill without having to think too much about it, and how a good lunch out experience builds better relationships with people. Being able to connect with friends and building a more open communication environment without strings is something no amount of money can buy. This is why the best things in life are free. A great dinner and movie with someone you love and loves you too you can get anytime; even footing the bill(s) without thought. But the unforgettable experience of being with someone you love and letting that person feel safe and not have to worry about anything; letting that person kn

Sleep and Lack of It

So now I'm having a hard time sleeping. Think of it this way: I get to sleep at 4 am, then wake up exactly 6 hours after that. I wouldn't call it lack of sleep entirely, but when after 6 hours of "sleep", you feel tired, it's as good as not sleeping at all. I'm getting cranky, impatient, and unproductive as ever. I'm running out of ideas as to how to deal with this in a better manner than blogging about it, so I'm trying that. As I'm writing this (offline, because I haven't dealt with the internet connection at home problem yet -- not too much a priority compared to all the other expenses moving to a new place entails) I'm watching CNBC to try and lull myself to sleep with business news. If you know me, it's hard for me to find anything on TV uninteresting: then maybe just listening to unending blabber would help my mind rest; which is highly unlikely. I'm going to give this a few minutes -- if I start yawning then it's done its


I am an impulse buyer. Whenever I see something I like, the number cruncher in my head starts working overtime to check whether I can afford to acquire that something I like. Today, I made a step towards changing the way I buy things. My first response whenever I think I'd like ot buy something (that's not a necessity like food or clothing) is: some other day. I'll be doing this for the next six months, mainly because I want to be able to save enough to start investing in real estate (read: I want to own my own house someday). Hopefully the next time I feel like spending, I can really put it off for some other day. CHill.

Eight Months...

... and counting. The 21st is a special day in my calendar mostly because it's the day we count one more month my girlfriend and I are together. So what can I say about the special day? I get reminded how blessed I am to be healthy, able, and productive in a relationship. I get to reflect on what has happened in the past few months and see in what areas I can improve on -- not only in the relationship, but also my life. I get to start looking at my plan(s) and evaluating whether I've been making progress. Aside from these, I get to celebrate the relationship with my loved one -- maybe not on the same day but close enough to be able to be able to enjoy each other's company. There's the phone calls, the emails, the IM's, the SMSes, and the dinners we share. I get to appreciate these things more as they come and I especially appreciate it when I realize that I can personally still improve. There's a lot to be said about being thankful, but there's also a lot to

Settling In

So it's a few days since I've moved in last Saturday into this new unit I'm renting for myself. It's nothing spectacular, 32 square meters all to myself and the occasional visitor. It's a place where I can be alone and rest, relax and learn, and even be creative and productive. The part I love the most is the independence and how everything inside that space is either totally under my control or can be controlled by me. I decide what internet service I'm going to get, what couch I'm going to buy and put in, what bed I'll buy to replace the bed I'm using, what new TV set to acquire... Pretty much what I put in there is not subject to debate or discussion, because basically that's all me. The next best part is the space -- just being able to be myself and alone there is very comforting. To know that when I lock that door, who I am in there nobody else will be able to see or question -- not that I do a lot of questionable things in there, except for

Long Week and Mental Blocks

So I'm sitting at a Cafe having the prelude to dinner alone enjoying a chicken ceasar salad. I forgot to bring reading materials with me -- my copy of TIME magazine is at home, and Newseek is with my girlfriend. So I figure, instead of reading what other people write, I go ahead and write instead. Today is a particularly long day -- I've hit a mental block trying to figure out how to approach a particular problem in the current project I'm involved in. Although taking full ownership of the project was my idea, I think I've put myself in a position where I'm not very comfortable -- though I love the pressure and challenge, this may just be still over my head and out of my experience at the moment. Whatever I learn in this project should allow me to level up in many aspects of my personal pursuit of improvement and excellence. This week was spent with sleepless nights and a re-programmed biological clock. I had gone back into working in the US timezone -- particularly

Self Motivation and How You Work

I just re-affirmed that I thrive in high pressure situations where the requirement to deliver is compelling and the problem being tackled complex. I feel most challenged and therefore more motivated to actually deliver. This trait of mine I don't think is in-built (or in my genes). Rather I'd think it was a result of years of training starting from my elementary days -- where being exceptional was rewarded while mediocrity was shunned. In High School though, it was the competition in sports, the belonging in a band, playing a role, and the chance at leadership which branded its way into my personality. In College, it was about realizing potential and equipping myself with the necessary skills and knowledge to make it in the real world. When I started working though, there were a few setbacks which caused me to look back at my life more than a handful of times. There were times when I was tempted to ask 'is this what it was all meant to be for?' or 'is this really wh

Why Headaches Hurt

I know it's really hard to deal with headaches. But I've always asked myself, why headaches hurt. I'm not a doctor, but watching enough Grey's anatomy has led me to believe that the brain doesn't really feel "pain". That's the reason why open brain surgery can be done while the person is awake. However, the nerves that do feel pain are in the skin, and the immediate area around the brain just near the bone. So now I ask, why do headaches hurt? Why is there pain inside the head when we don't have nerves there that should feel the pain? Like I said, I'm not a doctor. But I do have a headache -- and it's really painful right now. I think they call it a migraine. I just call it pain.

Talking and Feeling Alive

If you've seen me talk in front of a crowd before, you'd know I live for that kind of activity. It makes me feel really alive when I do presentations in front of people. Maybe it's because of the early exposure to public speaking engagements, but I think it's just in my nature to want to be heard and listened to. Maybe it's the same reason why I like blogging so much -- that the thought of getting myself and my point accross to a wide audience really makes me feel alive. Earlier today I spoke about "C++ and Your Future" in front of a crowd of maybe 60 people at the University of the Philippines Los Banos in a career orientation event set up by the UPLB Computer Science Society. I came as a representative of Friendster, but I talked more about how learning C++ can be a good thing for a graduating computer science student as far as career goes. I was technically the best example to show how a career doing C++ is possible even here in the Philippines -- becau

Electile Dysfunction

Electile dysfunction, FIRST PERSON By Alex Magno - Tuesday, January 22, 2008 : Most remarkable is what we might call a phenomenon of inverse effect: the more some politicians attempt to convince us that they are the ones who will save this nation, the lower they rate in the public opinion polls. The harder they try, the deeper they sink. “Electile dysfunction” appears to be affecting more Filipinos that we might be prepared to admit, what with all the contrived media stories about old horses preparing to run the 2010 race. I know of several meetings being held the past few weeks among concerned individuals, groups and networks seeking to uncover a path to a new mode of electoral politics: one that begins from genuine popular movements and responsive to grassroots expectations. I'm not normally a political blogger, but I'd like to think it's time we change the way politics works here in the Philippines. There should be a better way of choosing leaders short of changing the

Monthsary, Evening Commute, and Roxas Boulevard

So every 21st of the month my girlfriend and I commemorate the day of the month we decided to become a couple. We were officially together June 21st, 2007 -- and now seven months later we're still going strong. Is it just in the Philippines where monthsaries are important to couples just starting out? Or are monthsaries generally still being celebrated by couples? To date, this relationship has been the longest I've been in -- and my current job is the longest I've been at. I started work with Friendster on the 5th of February 2007 and that's just a few days away. The February 5 would be my 'Empoyment Anniversary' at Friendster -- not that it would make a lot of difference, I'm betting it's bound to just be another day at the office for me. For the first time tonight though I've tried to commute from my girlfriend's place in Manila to the condo at Makati at night. There I was in one of the usually busy thoroughfares and spots in Manila 10 PM in t

Once a Blogger...

... always a blogger. So I'm re-activating this blog, not for the benefit of the world at large but rather for the benefit of me. I've tried writing my thoughts down on a private journal, and I've tried keeping things to myself. But at the end of the day (or past few months) I realize that I need feedback -- and the thought of me being heard/read by anybody is more comforting than just being able to write. So now I'll make it a point to really share insights with the world in an effort to relieve myself of the misery of keeping my thoughts to myself. Not that I'm doing anybody a favor, but because as the blogger that I am, I need to be able to say my piece. There will be some things I will keep to myself -- some details of my life which I found better not to share with the world at large. Some intimate things I find I'd better write about in my personal journal. But there are things that happen around which I have always wanted to react to publicly. I found that