iMac G5 Launch : Where did the computer go?

MyMUG crew – Sean, Azul, me, Alvin, Chris (Azxel) + Juan (Qwerty)

The where-in-heaven’s-name-is-the-computer iMac G5 was officially launch with much fanfare and excitement last night at Velvet Underground : Zouk. Rudy of the Morning Crew emceed and he was as entertaining as he was funny and spirited. I had attended the event with some of my colleagues, a couple who are Mac-heads, like yours truly.

I am not a biggie fan of the new iMac form factor, but I think simplicity has its advantages. It does look sleek and minimal, definitely saves plenty of desktop space. Plus the G5 processor brings it one level up from the previous G4 offering. Nice, nice quality display (choice of 17″ or 20″) I have to say.

The highlight of the day was definitely Jit Murad who did a 45-minute skit. He was hilarious as usual, with a quick swoosh, transforming into Renee Choi, world reknowned hair stylist and *fooooh* blowdry specialist from Sungai Wang! 😀 He was funny, as usual. Talented dude, and Mac user, no doubt!

Audience was also fed with games, giving participants chances to win Apple merchandise – mostly polo tees and ‘Book bags. Did I mention exclusive? Ok.

All in all, it was a fun event. In fact, I think it was one of the better, more happening ones ever organised by Apple. Well done! And btw, the picture you see up there are some of the MyMUG members who came to support the event. Cheers people! See ya online!


Satria R3 : Made by Enthusiasts For Enthusiasts

The announcement and release of the Satria R3 by Proton Motorsports has aroused plenty of interest amongst the local autoscene, judging by postings in popular forums such as Zerotohundred, Team Matrix Motorsports and Race Rally Research.


Racer-boys Take Notice : Proton Satria R3 launched

Proton Motorsports soft-launched the much-anticipated Limited Edition Proton Satria R3 over the weekend at Pasir Gudang, Johor. The Satria R3 is set to be in the market on October 17 at 3 selected Proton Edar offices in the Northern, Southern and Central regions of the country.

This exclusive road-legal track car will only see 150 units in production, and I am sure will be snapped up in no time! A claimed 0-100km/h time of 8.6 secs and a top speed of 205kmh is plenty fast, although some may have anticipated better specs.


System Meltdown

Not quite the Holocaust or Armageddon, but however I look at it, the past three days have been rather hellish to say the least. Firstly, our laggy 1.25Ghz dual processor G4 server went down like a bitch. Locking up at startup, faster than you could say “Apple Rocks”, the server just refused to boot. Entering single user boot while attempting to repair using “fsck” brought no improvements.


Speedsters Hear Ye – Proton Track Carnival

One car, two drivers, a combined racing distance of 300km, three big races and prize money amounting to RM56,000 – that is the drama, excitement and rewards the PROTON Track Carnival at the Johor Circuit in Pasir Gudang from October 1-3, 2004 promises both competitors and spectators.

The main event at the carnival will be the Enduro Battle, a 42-lap or two-hour semi endurance race for Proton cars divided into two categories; Class A for normally-aspirated cars 1601cc to 1800cc, and Class B for cars up to 1600cc.

Unlike the normal Proton car race, this event allows competitors to carry out modifications to the engine, chassis and bodywork of the car as well as to explore the use of aerodynamics. This is in line with efforts to uplift the standards of racing, promoting technical research and development in automotive performance, and in providing greater and more exciting spectator action.

Close racing action however, will be the order of the weekend. Each team will comprise of two drivers, each required to compete in an 18-lap Sprint Battle with the combined results deciding the car’s position on the grid for the Enduro Battle. To level the field and competition, one of the drivers must be the holder of a novice competition licence and has never won any event in the past. The biggest element of fair play will be the installation of a restrictor in the induction system, a deliberate move to keep the cost of going racing at a minimum and in providing a ceiling to the outright power output that the machine can achieve.

“Our primary objective is to attract newcomers to the sport and as you know, cost is always a major factor in going motor-racing. What we’re doing is lowering the cost required to go racing. The race format has also been designed to produce competitive and talented drivers. We want them to concentrate on the driving more than worrying about not being able to do too much to their cars,” said PROTON Motorsports’ Head of Marketing Khaidi Kamaruddin.

“The race format has also been designed to give competitors maximum time on the track. What this means is that they’re looking at a full weekend of racing, from the time they go out for practice and qualifying on Friday. It is also an event that emphasizes on team tactics and team work and to win, they will have to perform consistently throughout the weekend.””

The prize money offered to those in Class A are as follows; 1st (RM10,000), 2nd (RM8,000), 3rd (RM5,000), 4th (RM4,000), 5th (RM3,000) and 6th (RM2,000). Class B will offer the following prizes; 1st (RM8,000), 2nd (RM6,000), 3rd (RM4,000), 4th (RM4,000), 5th (RM2,000) and 6th (RM1,000).

The entry fee for the event is RM1,500 for Class A and RM1,000 for Class B, and to register, kindly contact PROTON Motorsports at 03-5191 1055 or e-mail to or

My take:
After the successful Street Shootout (SSO) series, Proton is seriously doing their bit in promoting local motorsports. I’m all for it. Now where do I get that extra dosh from? Anyone interested in sponsoring? The entry fee is attractive and reasonable, and prizes are good as well. It is my ambition to participate in the Malaysian Super Series and/or the Merdeka Race or a local Proton Production race series. Hope to do that before I am 32, if that is realistic. Now, where did I put the keys to my track car again?


Top ten real reasons Rob Glaser is going after Apple

This is really good. Published by Bill Palmer of iPodGarage, this pokes fun at the current fiasco between Real Networks and Apple, and obvious ramblings over the ‘opening’ of the iPod and iTunes. Check out the list of top ten Real reasons below:

10. Didn’t think that ten years of crappy versions of RealPlayer had generated enough badwill for the “RealNetworks” brand name.

9. Felt bad about Steve Jobs being in the hospital, wanted to cheer him up by giving him something to laugh about.

8. Took at a look at the value of all that RNWK stock he’s holding, realized he couldn’t afford 99 cents per song.

7. Pulled the whole stunt just to help launch the comeback of Devo.

6. Actually thought he was signing up for a free VIP Pass for the South Beach Party.

5. Figured why steal music, when you can just steal the whole iPod?

4. Secretly planning to launch iPod-padlock accessory, as pictured here.

3. It was all just a plot to get this “Real vs. Apple” logo created.

2. Really just wanted to see his name on the iPod Garage Front Page.

and the number one real reason Rob Glaser is going after Apple…

1. It’s a complex strategy (buffering…) that involved many hours of (buffering…) intense discussion regarding (buffering…) various aspects of (download has failed).


When medium, is a large not small problem

And… I’ve just made another coaster. My fourth attempt to burn a backup of my stuff has yet again, failed. Lying in the bin, in no particular order, are 4 spanking new Sony CD-Rs. Unusable.

Toast Titanium 6 (the best CD-burner app on the planet?) kept bugging me with a “Medium Error”, just when it needs to do a “lead-out” to close the burning session. This is annoying. And I hate errors which really don’t tell you anything. Like a “Type 1” error. Or a “Type 2” error. What the fuck? How’s anyone supposed to know? Might as well just be “I’ve fucked up. It’s not my fault. It’s the system.”

My 1.8 Ghz G5 PowerMac in the office has been intermittently freezing on me. It’s not supposed to do that. It’s supposed to be uncrashable, thanks to its UNIX underpinnings. But, oh no, it has a mind of its own. It thinks it’s Windows of some sort. Hell, even the console startup is like DOS. (Well, at least there isn’t a “blue screen of death”).

I take care of it. I run maintenance scripts frequently. I do an “update_prebinding” to optimise the system. I delete and clear system + user cache. I verify and repair permissions. I do all that is possible to keep the system free of crap and running optimally.

What the heck’s going on?

And you know what’s funny? The G5 I have has a serious problem with Flash memory. Plug in any Flash-based peripherals and files get 100% corrupted. Without fail. And this has happened since upgrading to Panther (Mac OS X 10.3). Panther is quick and superb, but also introduced some nagging bugs with the update.

So, I thought – why not backup all your data then reformat the 120GB SATA drive and do a clean reinstall of the system? Shouldn’t take more than 2 weeks I reckon. But oh no…Toast just had to act up. Doesn’t want to burn a damn thing. Crap.

Don’t you hate it when things don’t work? The worst is when it doesn’t work and you don’t know why. Just spend your whole day figuring out through trial and error what could be causing these anomalies. Grrr… Maybe I should just format the damn thing, for the heck of it. Screw the data. Format and zero all data on the hard drive. Then leave the country.

Case closed.


Proton R3: Protons on steroids

Race Rally Research or R3 for short — Proton’s official motorsports division, has given supporters something to look forward to in the coming months. The R3 marketing head has released a scoop on what’s to come from R3, very soon.

Automotive Musings

I not stupid, I is Malaysian

The Malaysian transport mentality

It’s easy to suddenly have a heart attack or a bout of high blood pressure in Malaysia. Especially if you, like millions of others, rely on public transport for your daily commute. No, this isn’t a blog full of complaints about Malaysia’s lovely public transportation services. I’ll leave that to battle another day. This is about Malaysians. The commuter. Your fellow bus passenger. Your train-mate. Your monorail buddy.


[From the Archives] Spyshot: Proton Arena Special Edition

Proton has been working hard of late. An unknown source sent a spyshot of Proton’s latest offering – a suped-up Proton Arena, believed to be a Special Edition, sporting a new form factor and a new Lotus-designed engine.