Wearing dice on my head since 2008 Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart. Randomly amazed.

roytang.net

last update:

RP troop pullout not cowardice, at least not according to Malacanang. The whole world knows by now that the Philippine government has capitulated (or intends to, at least) to the demands of terrorists kidnappers holding Filipino truck driver Angelo dela Cruz hostage. Even Jay Leno took his shots at our country, with the following quote from opening monologue of Wednesday night, July 14, 2004: For the 2nd time in the past few days, a new world record has been set in the 100 meter dash.

On Internet Quizzes

I’m not particularly fond of internet quizzes that attempt to plunk you down into a category – but sometimes they’re damn accurate. [ Take this one for example]1. My results are: You are an SEDF–Sober Emotional Destructive Follower. This makes you an evil genius. You are extremely focused and difficult to distract from your tasks. With luck, you have learned to channel your energies into improving your intellect, rather than destroying the weak and unsuspecting.

I suppose everyone and their mother has had a chance to voice their opinions on Spiderman 2 by now, so here’s mine: Some parts are hokey, some parts are cheesy, some parts are gratuitous Hollywood crap, it has quite a few inconsistencies and plot holes but overall, it’s a hell of a ride, and I found it considerably more ‘fun’ than the first one. That being said, I’m not entirely excited about the Goblin making an obvious comeback in Spiderman 3, but the only other Spidey nemesis worthy of being in a movie would be Venom… and bringing alien symbiotes in the equation would completely change the feel of the movies.

Maniac Mansion Deluxe is a 256-color remake of the original Maniac Mansion, done by a group calling themselves LucasFan Games. I’m not sure how legal this is, but hey, it’s Maniac Mansion! Any adventure gamer worth his salt knows about the Mansion and Dave’s efforts to save his girlfriend Sandy from Dr. Fred and the evil meteor. The great thing about Maniac Mansion (or not so great, maybe), is that unlike later adventure games, your kids can die, you can accidentally blow up the mansion and you can get work yourself into an unsolvable situation.

… I mean, take that dream I had a couple of nights ago; after going to work I was wondering whether I should tell that particular person “Hey, I dreamt you were a bag of chips.” What sort of psychological message could thinking a person was a bag of chips possibly have?  

Yup, it’s a Japanese-only PS2 game based on the currently popular Naruto anime/manga. If you’re not aware of Naruto, it’s pretty much like Dragonball Z, except with better animation, actual reasons for fighting, and ninjas instead of aliens. It tells the story of a young boy in the Hidden Village of Konoha, cursed with being the living incarnation of a feared nine-tailed demon fox spirit. Simple enough eh? The game itself is cool; it’s one-on-one fighting featuring characters from the anime/manga.

… that disgraceful slow-count of an election canvass that is. I can’t help but wonder whether anyone actually bothered to follow the last few days of the canvassing on TV… I mean, the proceedings are boring as hell! You know what would have been better for the country as a whole? When I saw a small portion of it, the only thing I could think of was that we should have WWE’s The Rock on the National Board of Canvassers!

Games: N

gaming

N s a nice little slightly-addictive flash game about a ninja trying to get through doors. Check it out.

Literally translated as “I dare you to touch his ear”, the phrase is commonly used by elementary school boys prior to starting a fight. It’s similar to the more well-known Western scenario where one boy draws a line across the sand and goes “I dare you to cross this line” This phrase came to me today because we were talking to two girls (well okay, ladies) at work today and they weren’t familiar with the phrase or it’s usage.

As I’ve mentioned before, I was sent to HK a couple of weeks back, for the rollout of a project I’ve been involved with for about a year and a half. I’m not sure if it’s right for me to be talking about the project here, so I won’t delve into any specifics. I will however, bore you all with stories from my first trip anywhere remotely far from home.

God, it feels good to be goofing off. After having to spend six days in HK (well, more like five-and-a-half, more on that later) and then proceeding to conduct SQL training sessions for the latest batch of recruits, I was kinda tired and stressed out from work. Good thing I had the common sense to file for two days leave after the elections last Monday; don’t have to come in ‘til tomorrow.

I’ll probably leave for the voting place in a half an hour or so. Anyway, my choices are already made: PRESIDENT : Roco, Raul VICE-PRESIDENT : SENATORS : Alvarez, Heherson T. Barbers, Robert Biazon, Rodolfo Chavez, Francisco Escudero, Salvador Gordon, Richard Herrera, Ernesto F. Hussin, Parouk Mercado, Orlando Pimentel, Aquilino Jr. Q. Roxas, Manuel ‘Mar’ II Yasay, Perfecto Jr.

I’m not sure yet. I obviously don’t have much time to maintain it. I’d like pretty much to have a “professional” website, with the domain name and everything, but I’m afraid it would fall into misuse as well. Arrr… .I’ll figure something out.

Roy goes to HK

travels

Yup. This week, for the first time ever, I’m leaving the country, and flying down to HK to provide support for the rollout of the project I’ve been with for the past year and a half. First time to leave the country, and I’m gonna be flying alone to a country where people speak a language I can recognize but not understand. I’m understandably a bit freaked out; who wouldn’t be, right?

http://www.pbase.com/images/24017078.original.jpg (Edit 04-Feb-06: This is now a dead link. The image used to hold a google job ad on a billboard that was obviously aimed at developers.)

Today’s random links: Insert Credit – a nice website about gaming. I think the contributors all live in Japan, as they always seem to talk about prices in Yen. They’ve got some neat stuff, I wish I’d found their website before. Also, they keep talking about something called the GP32, and some of the things they say make me curious about it. It’s some sort of gaming platform, apparently, but I’m too lazy to go through google and find out more details.

I got it same time as FFX-2. However, I can’t get it to run… when I choose “Game” from the launcher, I just get the little spinning disc cursor for a while, then nothing. I’ve tried most of the stuff found in the accompanying troubleshooting doc, and I’ve sent Lucasarts a plea for help, but no response so far. Any help? Actually I had the same problem with Neverwinter Nights when I first got it, and I was able to work that out by downloading the most recent patch.

I”m about two or three hours into it. I like it. But then again, I like anything with a job system and learnable abilities. I find myself excited at the prospect of learning abilities with weird names such as “Cheap Shot”, “Initiative”, “Flametongue” and “Silent Samba”! The game itself has a very “happy” feel… the battles are fast-paced and the general mood is upbeat. If you came in looking for a Final Fantasy game, you’re gonna be disappointed.

Since I got Windows XP a little less than a year ago, I’ve tried looking around for cheap (read: free) ways to customize the interface. I did eventually find some solutions, but after trying a nice chrome theme for a while, I eventually went back to the default XP look. Why? I realize now, I like the Luna interface. It’s neat. It’s one of the best things to come out of Microsoft in eight years.

Stompy

I’m alive, I think. Last Saturday, I helped an old man cross a very dangerous street! This may seem a weird thing to report, but it felt unusual enough to be helping a complete stranger. I’m not saying I don’t normally help complete strangers, but I rarely see people helping old people cross the street! I’m thinking of getting a domain name and paid webhosting… there’s [ this host that’s cheap and local]1… .

Revolutions

gaming

So I saw Matrix: Revolutions last Friday. Nice movie, entertaining to watch, but it’s not as deep as you’d expect, and the Matrix trilogy really ends not with a bang but with a whisper. I like this review , it analyzes things very well. I feel like quitting Warcraft III for a while — maybe a couple of weeks. I’m not really getting any better at it, and I’m a bit bored with it now.

W3Chart

gaming

W3chart – seems to be a Warcraft 3 utility of sorts. I hear it can measure your APM, if you like that sort of thing. I’m still downloading it, so haven’t tried it yet.

Things are flaky. Have setup this blogger thing to publish to the fateback account (roytang.sinfree.net), seems to be working fine now. Ressurrected one of the older page layouts and added the pandaren brewmaster! Anyway, I’ll also probably most of the website stuff from topcities to fateback, seeing as how topcities has gotten crappy lately with the FTP problem. That is all, back to work…

Whee… holiday. For those not from the Philippines, All Saints Day and All Souls Day are non-working holidays for us, and the roads are generally jammed anywhere near cemeteries as Filipinos flock to the graveyards to remember their deceased loved ones. Sadly, since my folks are out of town, and I have no idea how to get to the resting place of my grandparents without them, all I can do is say a prayer for them right here.

Yesterday, at around 6 PM, as I was winding up the day’s work, we received a request from the user that they wanted some maintenance work done on one of the more obscure programs. And they needed it the next day! And we still had to have a meeting (we had originally scheduled the meeting for 3:00PM but had to keep pushing it due to stuff coming up) I wanted to reach out across the internet and slap whoever made the maintenance request on the head.

New Beginning

meta

“If history is to change, let it change! If the world is to be destroyed, so be it! If my fate is to die, I must simply laugh.” – Magus, Chrono Trigger For as long as I have known about it, I have always liked this quote. It speaks of a certain ferocity, a certain stubbornness, a firm, unbending belief that whatever life throws at you, you will be able to not only handle it, but laugh in the face of its absurdity.

Well, not exactly. But I am now 25, in any case. Looking back, there are many things I might have regretted, but my life philosphy tells me that there can be no regrets. The past is past, and the future is yet to come. Somehow, I’m only a few steps closer towards achieving my lifetime goals, but my gut tells me to keep on dreaming. Such is the folly of a dreamer.

I installed Civilization III, and told myself, “Gee, I guess I’ll try it out for an hour or so.” I didn’t stop for six hours. So much for getting anything done over the weekend. Luckily (or not), my being awake those six hours of early morning allowed me to catch some late-breaking news. Apparently, disgruntled young officers of the not-so-prestigious Armed Forces of the Philippines had taken control of some building in Makati, laying bombs and stuff

Free time… that’s something I haven’t had in a while. Work is tough right now, as we’ve got a big deadline coming up in August. I’ve been putting in 10-12-hour days on a regular basis over the past couple of weeks or so, so I barely have any time to do anything. (Except for a few quick games of [ The Frozen Throne]1 before going to bed of course.)

Last Tuesday, I got a very rare treat (?). I was invited (under false pretenses I might add) to a seminar trying to sell me to the concept of network markets. It was by a group of people called “Network 21” who supposedly have a corporate partner in Amway. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against these people, I’m sure they’re enjoying themselves looking for sucke-I mean clients, and convincing them to buy Amway toothpaste and shampoo and vitamins and god-knows-what.

Good plot twists you could see from a mile away. Unfortunately, we had arrived at the theater too late to catch the start of the last showing of Gangs of New York, so we had to settle with the second choice. _The Recruit _didn’t get as much critical acclaim as Gangs, but what the heck, Al Pacino in a spy thriller? How could I lose? The story is simple enough. Colin Farell plays James Clayton, a young man just out of MIT, recruited by CIA agent William Burke (Pacino).

How’s work you ask? It’s going pretty well actually. Everything’s still easy-peasy for me as I’m undergoing some training and stuff. I’m a bit worried about what happens after the training though, from the looks of it people put in a lot of overtime here. :( The best thing about the job is that I’m learning a lot of stuff. In two weeks I learned SQL, PL/SQL and Delphi. Starting tomorrow I’m gonna be training on Oracle Developer.

Yes I do. I bought a new hard drive yesterday, a 40Gb 5400RPM Seagate. It took me a while to get the system up and running again after my plugging it in. First I had to wrestle with my PC’s small case, trying to figure out where to place the thing. Then, given how old my PC is, it predictably failed to detect the whole capacity of the drive, insisting it was only 8 Gb.

Well, trying to make this a weekly format thing obviously fizzled out. What with me starting work on Friday, I just give up. I’ll keep this site up and put up stuff of interest whenever I feel like it, just like before. So what’s new? As I said, work starts Friday. I went to an orientation for the job last Friday and it seems like a tough and demanding job, but

Anyway, I’ve had a couple of days to think about it, so I’d like to share my thoughts on the matter. First, the facts: Enix and Square are merging. Square stock will be bought out for Enix stock at 0.81 Square per 1 Enix. The Square president will be head of Square Enix, the Enix board remains in place, they’ll move into Enix headquarters in Shibuya. All currently announced releases will go on as scheduled.

The Bourne Identity A new action hero is Bourne I was a bit anxious to see this movie, as I had thoroughly enjoyed the book of the same name a long time ago, and I was hoping the movie would give me the same satisfaction. The Bourne Identity stars Matt Damon as rogue CIA agent/amnesiac Jason Bourne. In his quest to uncover his own identity, Jason travels all around Europe pursued by the CIA’s agents and dragging along an innocent gypsy girl who just happened to be his best shot for a ride to Paris.

Birthday #24

birthday

I turned 24 yesterday. Generally uneventful birthday, as usual. I’m glad I got the whining done in the last post. Spent the night before at David’s (whose birthday is a couple of days before mine). Dave, Mon and I played approximately seven hours of CvS2, watched a Jet Li flick then played around eight hours of Warcraft III. WC3 is the bomb! (And it further highlights my craving for a new computer) Anyway, went home the next morning, got some sleep.

I’m pissed off. Today I went to Ortigas for a job interview with a nameless IT company where my cousin Rachel works. I was quite optimistic too — the position was for a “Java Trainee.” I was more than willing to be trained, and a trainee position meant you didn’t have to be proficient in Java right? Turns out I was wrong. =( Apparently they needed someone with some experience in Java, preferably with a project or two under his belt.

I originally wasn’t going to have a rant today, but while surfing the web I thought about one of the things I like about it: personal websites. That’s right, personal pages. Some people might argue that personal pages are like the dregs of the internet. And they’re probably right. Given that any random joe-on-the-street can get on Geocities and build his own website, (like royness.vze.com for instance) we’re certainly bound to see all sorts of stuff (and accordingly, all sorts of crap) on the internet.

[Posted on the GameFAQs message board in response to endless whining about rushes. Last I heard, Battle.net had a competitive ladder system, meaning if you want to go up on the ladder, you have to win. If rushing is the means for that win, you should go for it. What does this mean? If you don’t want to be rushed, don’t play on Battle.net, because on Battle.net people play primarily

Sometimes my still being unemployed depresses me greatly (Although my periods of depression typically last no more than thirty minutes.) The biggest problem in my job-hunting woes is the fact that the type of job I want varies greatly from what I have training in. I want to be involved in IT or programming, but I don’t have a lot of the skills necessary to succeed in those fields. I will probably always regret not shifting to Computer Science or even Computer Engineering early on in college.

Well I finally decided to start a full-blown web journal. I used to keep one some years ago — I think it greatly helped me develop my english skills. Or not. Anyway, I tend to run my mouth off for paragraphs at a time anyway, and so many things run through my head at any given time it probably makes sense to put down at least some of it on paper (or in a computer at least.

First off, I haven’t finished the game yet, I’m somewhere in Chapter 5. I stopped playing the game a month or so ago out of sheer irritation. For the uninitiated, H:RBE is a tactical RPG for the PSX, released during the last year the PSX. The game is similar in some respects to games like Final Fantasy Tactics and Tactics Ogre, with an emphasis on turn-based squad-level combats. Unlike FFT and TO’s similar Active Time system, H:RBE uses a system called RAP, where each character can perform as many actions as he wants provided he still has the RAP gauge to pay for it.

I stood there wordlessly, inching my way through the unending mass of people. There must have been several hundred people crammed into less than two hundred square meters of mall area, interspersed with some twenty cubicles filled with various displays and banners. What madness is this you ask? What product could be so enticing that hundreds of otherwise sane people to participate in such a gathering, jostling for space and risking being elbowed, stepped on or maybe even pick pocketed?

Hey, we have cable again! Okay, so we never actually _lost_ cable, but it felt like we had, back when the Star network withdrew its channels from Home Cable around six months ago. Now they’re back, which means I once again get to watch Simpsons, Futurama and Whose Line Is It Anyway? =) In other news, I’m still unemployed and cashless. =(

So the ECE board exams are now over. Six months (okay three) of hard work and preparation (well alright, occasionally glancing at my books) and what do we get? A bunch of questions chosen seemingly at random. The Math and Electronics parts were good enough actually, and I felt pretty confident there. The second day was bad. The Communications exam might as well have been a random set of questions about cookie dough and displacer beasts.

Do it to Julia!

Four days before board exam. Will borrow calculator from Switch. Holiday on Monday. Edsamail is no longer free. That sucks, and now I have a new e-mail account: roytang (at) softhome (dot) net. Looks like The Gaming Intelligence Agency is really dead.