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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Village Park Nasi Lemak @ PJ Uptown

Advantages of being a Malaysian, you get to eat all kind of foods from the vast multi cultural mixture in the country. One of the all time favourites Malaysian food is of course Nasi Lemak. My wife is a big fan of it, and the question is where is the best nasi lemak in KL? My sister brought over to try out the all famous Village Park. I knew it existed, but never know the exact location or try it before, because its actually quite far from my house for a morning breakkie. Covering it for you here now.

Village Park Nasi Lemak Restaurant is basically located in the Uptown of Petaling Jaya, and it's just along the shoplots behind the row facing the LDP highway. It's easily found because they will have this blue tents put up in front of their twin shoplots. Looking at the crowd, you bet it is good.

While making our way in, can't help to notice all the newspaper cutting stick at the doorstep. Newspaper, and a famous face, our current Prime Minister eat here as well. My sister told me this place got even more famous after his visit. Can't see why, because I don't think our PM is a food critics :P

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Cedric's First Overseas Trip

My baby is 16 months old now, and yesterday mark the first day for him to go overseas!

It's more like a small river than sea, we bring him over to Singapore for a short holiday and he is enjoying max. Not sure if he knows, but he seems to be more active and happy compare to at home, great to see his laughter. With his new passport valid for upcoming 5 years, we will plan for more trips for him, and hope for him to absorb whatever we can to give him for a good future.

My wife lined up entire program for him, he probably don't know what's going on, but it's also just an excuse for both of us to have a little escape from our routine life =)

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Praise to Ipoh Immigration Office, Crap to Putrajaya Bullshit

This post is on special request by my wife, because she got so emotional about this so requested me to do special entry. Yes Ma'am!

With my baby boy approaching 16 months now, finally we can start to plan for some trips for ourselves, and also expose him to other part of the world. We wanted to apply passport for him so at least we can bring him to the nearest 'overseas' Singapore. It took us 3 attempts, before we finally manage to get him a Passport! That's crazy considering immigration department in Malaysia has improved tremendously over my last visit, but think we are back to square one.

As both of us are working, so our times are quite limited, and we target to complete the application by Saturday morning. After checking know the opening time, we choose to go to the Kelana Jaya branch, because there is normally where I done my passport. My friends has warned me about crowd and advice me to go Putrajaya instead, but I thought not necessary. As we reached there, we saw a full crowd of people in the entire immigration office, some even have to stand outside. I quickly lined up to get the queue number, and before the queue even start moving, the officer announced "Sistem Tergendala, Harap Maaf", meaning system is down. Everyone don't know what's happening and continue to queue, my wife asked and officer said it's impossible to get the passport within the same day, so we decided to go off as we know our baby wouldnt be able to wait patiently together with us.

As when we decided to leave, my civic then gives us the trouble, engine not able to start, this refer back to my old post. Now you know my frustration. Wasted entire day for this when we got so many things on schedule.

2nd attempt, after Kelana Jaya experience, we finally decided to give Putrajaya branch a try. Long drive and upon reaching there, the building is beautiful from outside, but looks like ghost town. Went inside and it's so run down, really sad seeing our tax money wasted in such manner. Worst, there is only 4 counters and again there is a whole bunch of crowd filling entire tiny room. This time we decided to wait for it, as we couldn't afford to wait another week. We told the officer we got a baby with us, asking for queue number and he give us the number 86, and now serving 02. I went like WTF??? Asked the officer again, roughly how long need to wait, he said 1 hour. I doubted it, but without choice, I brought my family for breakfast and came back, to our horror after 30minutes, the number serving is 04!!! I told my wife, they move 1 number within 15minutes, we need 1,260minutes, that's 21hours! My wife said, let's wait a while more. I observe the counters see what they are doing, and saw they are calling a different set of numbers and all of them are family with young baby. I quickly ask one of the father why his number is different from mine, he told me you must tell the officer that you have a young baby, they will give you priority. I said I told them! I quickly pull my wife to the counter and the officer earlier is no where to sight. The lady told us yes, there is different number for family with baby. And we got 08 instead while it's not serving 04. A big relief, but angry. Just another few minutes after we got our new number, the officer again announce, "Sistem Tergendala, Harap Maaf". WTF!?

We check with the officer again, and he said it's whole Malaysia system problem, no matter where we go, it's the same. Crap, we got to drive all the way back to KL and wasted yet another half day for this crap. What pissed me off is the unprofessional of the officer, all wearing stylish casual wear and chit chatting and laughing behind the counter while hundred of applicants waited impatiently. It's attitude problem, I don't see them working hard trying to resolve the problem and serve the people.

We planned for Ipoh trip, so I told my wife, let's give it another try in Ipoh, she is sceptical about Ipoh immigration office. As we reach Ipoh branch, there is long queue. We quickly lined up and got a special number for baby. To our surprise, there are nearly 20 counters!! And they call our number right after we step in! Within 15 minutes, we got everything settled, and passport is ready within an hour. My wife is so happy and that's when she told me must blog about this! Praising the effectiveness of the Ipoh branch, friendliness of the staff and their professionalism! I felt proud of them as well, considering myself as Ipoh boy. We catch our wonderful and happy breakfast, and the passport is ready for us in 45 minutes instead. The service is 180 degree different from the Putrajaya!

What system is down for entire Malaysia? Crap!
Putrajaya being the capital of the government services, 4 counters and idiot officer? Crap!

Point to note, in Ipoh branch, they are churning our numbers very fast even for normal queue, as we walk away by 10am, the numbers already breached 100+ queue. Talk about effectiveness of Malaysia government, business as usual without any improvements. No wonder everyone is crying for a change in the government, as long as they continue to waste our tax money (My family contributed a lot of tax money, that's why I'm so mad!) they won't be long to stay in the office.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Honda Insurance Package, Like!

Last Saturday my Honda Civic got into flat battery problem, and me and my family is stucked in the town with baby in tow. For those with a young baby in the family, you know my frustration. Reliability and predictability is the main reason why we choose to buy a Honda, but then this happen to me. Without any warning / sign in the morning start, it just refuse to crank at parking lot. My Honda Civic is only 1 year 7 months old and clocking around 29,000km only.

When we bought the car, we took up the Honda Insurance Package as well, which is basically insured by Tokio Marine. Knowing that it should be under warranty, I call up the HIP's emergency number and after some calls, rescue sent from Honda 3S, Tenaga Setia Resources (because they are the nearest service center to my location) arrived after nearly 30 minutes. They jump-started my car, and pointed me over to their service center for battery warranty claim. Reached there and priority is given for insurance claim case, and my car is done within another 30 minutes, while my baby played at the children section in the center.

Although it was a bit hassle, but I overall praise the efficiency and response of the rescue team, particularly immediate attention on my case when I'm in the service center. For those new buyer of Honda car, go along with the Honda Insurance Package, it's integrated insurance with Honda Service Center that prioritise on the customer needs. I'm still a happy customer =)

Monday, October 29, 2012

BSN Putrajaya Night Marathon 2012

Recently I manage to complete another 21km marathon and this time we got 9 of us in the run. One of my friends manage to convince our company to sponsor us for the registration fees, and he successfully did it. Special thanks to our compny, truly encouraging healthy lifestyle for the employees. We have some new comers this time, so we train together but some are particularly lacking in training because they always never show up. So we already expecting them to suffer during the run, true enough, they struggled. Did they complete the run? Let's find out.

We joined the BSN Putrajaya Night Marathon 2012 and we travelled there in 2 cars. We all met nearby my house, and heavy rain just started pouring with thunderstorm! All of us were so worry as we would be running in the rain, but luck is on our side. The rain didn't reach Putrajaya area, and it was all clear sky when we reached there. We had some bread, water and took photos then the event is near starting at 8.30pm.

This run, I acted as the sweeper, partly because I didn't train enough to do time attack, but main reason were to take care of our new comers into their 1st 21km marathon event. True enough, 2 friends that's lacking in training, struggled along the race. I ran along with them, helped them and gave them encouragement. The lady that started off with stomach pain, I suspected she ate too much and she felt pain on the right side of the abdomen. I slowed her down and she felt better after drinking some water along the way. She also made a big mistake by wearing her new Reebok shoe for the run, and the shoe is a size smaller for marathon run (normally we buy a size bigger). Her feet started to feel the pain and finally she couldn't take it anymore upon 10km distance. She took it off and I carried the shoes for her, and she speed up like a leopard. Problem then started for my 2nd friend, the macho guy.

Initially, he seemed to be running good, and he pounded away from us after 10km mark, but we picked him back in 12-13km, he was struggling to continue to run as the pain started to attack his feet. This is the common problem for new comers, as they didn't put enough distance into their training, so their body can't take the punishment. He struggled badly that we have to run and walk along the way. I can see he is really suffering with the feet pain, and he felt like giving up, asking question about why people so stupid joining these kind of marathon. Gave some encouragements, we continued to push our limit and after over 2 hours, we were finally reaching the final few kms. I pushed them to complete the run, and the lady took off going ahead of us. I waited for my other friend, and his face started to turn pale. I were so worry that he will pass out. Persistent paid off, we both crossed the finishing line just a minute after 3 hours.

All of us completed the run safely, and as expected, some suffered the pain for days after the event, part and parcel of the marathon experience. They swear not to join again, but I'm sure they will run again next round =) Well done to all my friends.

I told them every run is a new experience, and for me, what's new?
1. I run with 4 shoes for the first time in my life on a 21km marathon (carrying shoes for the lady)
2. My first run in Putrajaya, and boy the place is beautiful. Too bad the route got too many slope, struggled a little over the marathon.

Cheers, and keep running =) Respect the Distance ...

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Which Smartphone to Buy?

My ownership of the iPhone4 is near the end, reaching the usual 2 years circle as my contract with carrier end this year. So as usual, we are out to hunt for our next smartphone that will accompany us for the coming 2 years. My wife has basically decided to go for the new iPhone 5, as she is so comfortable with the iOS operation, then the headache is for mine.

I look at the market, and there are only a few notable players, namely Apple, Samsung, HTC, Nokia. There are others, but not really big players, so let's stick to the big names only, shall we?

    photo courtesy of

 For Apple, there is only 1 product. iPhone 5 that's just announced, and it's not even in Malaysia yet. The iOS is a great operating system, I've been using it for 2 years, and it's all great, predictable and functional. There is no problem for me to continue with another iPhone for another 2 years, but I just dying for something different, to try out something else. However, the iPhone 5 still marvel in the following, which I'm still holding my grounds towards other brand.
Most notable feature: Incredible Retina Display (no matter what pixel you are advertising, nothing beats the Retina Display as of today!), excellent iOS system on functionality and stability, incredible built quality (premiumly built, and I dropped it multiple times, still functioning with only minor scratches).

    photo courtesy of

For Samsung, I'm particularly looking at the Galaxy Note 2, incredible 5.5" size and I'm a man that's always looking for bigger stuff! I'm very much attracted to the sreen size and the 1.6GHz Quad Core Processor is just a no brainer features! However, the superb screen size is also a concern as I've personally play with a Galaxy Note 1 before, and it's not really ergonomics for our hand size. Further, the infamous plastic built quality of Samsung device is not really to my liking. I love the device, the specs tick all my boxes, but the size and plastic built is holding me back. What other choice I have? Galaxy S3? It's the same with a smaller screen, I would probably be prefer to go for iPhone 5 in that case.

    photo courtesy of

For HTC, their trademark set named One X is almost the same as the Galaxy S3, only with a better built quality, much better and going head to head with iPhone. Performance wise still lose to S3 but if you are looking for a good built quality set on Android, One X is the only choice. For the size of 4.7", I'm torn between S3 or One X.

    photo courtesy of

For Nokia, Microsoft based Lumia seems to take the world by storms, but it is still at its infancy, and they are growing fast. I've play with one before too, and the interface is definitely refreshing with lots of potential. I would say it's better than the Android, but due to its late entry, the concern is still on the apps availability and future potential. Lumia 920 the crown of model line-up, seems to be still running on dual core, but that's not a real concern as long as the Windows is running well.

I still can't make up my mind, and all above are almost in the same price range, only package by carrier will need a microscope to determine the best deal. With same price, concern is still on which to choose, as it's a 2 year commitment. It's sad to stuck with something you don't like, so I will spend some more time to think this through, I got 2 weeks more =)

You will notice that I don't stress on the specification, as they are mostly in the same. However, the operation of the smartphone does not rely on the processor, RAM, pixels and etc alone. It's a whole package, that's why Apple iOS is the most stable as they controlled everything. For top range smartphone, their performance is comparable, only consideration is the operating system if it's to your liking, and also the screen display and sizes.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Nasi Kandar Line Clear @ Penang

Been to Penang a few times so far, and this round I travel with a friend of mine, and he said want to eat the yummilicious Nasi Kandar in Penang. I asked him what's that, and he went like ... He asked me, you really don't know? I said no, then off we go to find the famous Nasi Kandar in Penang Island.

Introducing the Nasi Kandar Line Clear, hey, that's very weird name. Line Clear?? It's located just along the Jalan Penang and few shops away from the junction of Lebuh Chulia. Do notice that there are two shops in the photos, the Line Clear and the Yasmeen. Don't mistaken that they are the same, Line Clear is the famous one, Yasmeen is just another imitation trying to take advatanges of the fame, usual case.

Then you complain, where is it? It's along the road beside Yasmeen, and here is the entrance, hehe. It's not even a proper shop, and here is the entrance. Maybe that's why they are famous. As you can see, people line up all the way until outside, and the black shirt with stripes guy is lining up too.

This is the line of people queueing up, and the food is in the middle of the "restaurant". People mountain, people sea. I easily counted 30 people infront of us, but it's moving fast!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Chung Kee "Dai Shu Geok" @ Ipoh

In Ipoh, there are lots of good food around, but then everyone is asking me what else to eat in Ipoh? I tell them yong tau fu, then they said isn't the best yong tau fu is in Ampang? I replied, yes, because Ipoh's style yong tau fu is not called as such. We called them liu fun. Don't know how to explain, but it's been that way for long long time. It's almost the same thing basically, just that we don't eat them with rice.

This is the famous Chung Kee "Dai Shu Geok" in Ipoh. Dai Shu Geok meaning Big Tree Foot. The name is given because Chung Kee is originally located below a very big tree, so Ipoh people call the place Big Tree Foot rather than Chung Kee. It's well known, any Ipoh people will be able to point the direction.

New outlet, more spacious, more hygienic, and more comfortable. I personally don't like it, because I think it lost its charm of being a neighbourhood stall churning out good food. However, with a baby in tow, this environment is definitely more convenient for family. Appreciate it also.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Akamomiji Japanese Restaurant @ Ipoh

Visited this place time ago, and since I'm free now, trying to clear off my outstanding posting as much as possible. If you are in Ipoh, and suddenly craving for Japanese food, how? Every town will have some nice places for these kind of food, and in Ipoh, I introduce you the Akamomiji Japanese Restaurant. Most of the Ipoh boys and girls will know this place, as they serve one of the cheapest and best quality food in the town.

Akamomiji Japanese Restaurant, located in the new shop lots within the Ipoh Garden East. It's not hard to find, and it takes up 2 lots with rooms available.

Interior, the bar counter is all clean and sleek. It's not one of the best looking restaurant, but they do looks professional. Talked to the owner and their fish are directly imported from Japan every Tuesday. So if you are looking for fresh Japanese fish, go on Wednesday. Not sure if they have changed that though. Why run so far to KL for a Japan fish lunch/dinner?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Yang Kee Beef Noodle @ OUG

I've been staying nearby OUG for a long long time, and all these while I'm not aware of this place that serves one of the best beef noodles! My best friend CW brought me over the other day, and I got really surprise on how the delicious is the food, which me as a food blogger don't even aware of its existence. Talk about finding gems within own farm.

Introducing the best beef noodles in this tiny shop named Yang Kee Beef Noodles. It's located just along the shop of "famous" Steven's Corner within the OUG.

The shop is all airy, clean, and bright. Plastic chair and plastic table all around, and the cooking is all done at the back. They hang up those red decoration, earlier I thought it's some kinda japanese restaurant, haha.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Antipodean @ Bangsar

One fine day, suddenly I'm craving for a big breakfast, and the usual route to McDonald seems routine and I'm longing for something different. Remember my sister and friends told me about this big breakfast place named Antipodean in Bangsar, I decided to bring my wife over for a leisure morning.

Antipodean Coffee-Cafe-Culture, located along the shoplots in the famous Bangsar clubbing area, corner shop with a good black and white colour scheme and lots of windows.

As you step into the cafe, you will be greeted by some sleek dark brown tables & chairs arranged closely to each other. The menu are drawn over the wall along the restaurant, but it's not fun for me as I'm facing the window, where I will need to twist my body half way to read it.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Photography: Putrajaya International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta 2012

My last post is 20th April 2012 and today is 11th July 2012, I've been missing in action for months, and I sincerely apologise for it. Personal life has been hectic and whoever say maintaining a blog needs only a little commitment, he/she is lying or he/she has no life.

I'm trying to pull myself together and update this more often, as this blog still serve the reason why I live my life to fullest. Lots has been accomplished recently, and I will update it one by one. Here I will go with the earlier photoshooting session I done for the 4th Putrajaya International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta 2012 event. I travelled with my best friend over in the dark morning, and both of us are happy with the results. It's great that Malaysia organise this kind of international event, really successful one. Enjoy.

As it's still early, we stop by a good spot and start shooting. Very nice architectural, proud of it.

Warning: this post is very photos heavy, so might take up your broadband quota and might be a bit slow to load.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Super Responsive New iPad!

Today 20th April 2012 is the official launch date of the new iPad (a.k.a. iPad 3rd generation). I've been eyeing for a tablet since the lost of my Galaxy Tab 10.1" and nothing is able grab my attention. I'm not really Apple fans and in fact I'm agains't it because of the control that Apple impose on their system. Pro and cons, but I'm not in favour of it. However, the retina display in iPhone 4 win everything else hands down, and I bought it on the spot earlier.

Same decision is drawing me to look at the new iPad with similar feelings 2 years ago. I've been scanning all the forums to check if there are lots of crowds and where got available stocks. I even thought of taking a day off to line up for it. Luckily I didn't, because there are no queue at certain area and there are plenty of stocks available. Right after my working hours, I make my way to Mac Studio in Bangsar Shopping Center!

Good day, not much traffic and I arrived in BSC within minutes. Made my way up to the 1st floor and there's the Mac Studio. There was a small crowd but there was no queue, nice. Made my order, signed the credit card bill, and the box was then given to me. Staff instructed me to move to the corner for inspection. Opened up, powered on and checked for screen pixelation damage. How it's done? Check this out. Everything was good, and off I went. I spent less than 15minutes there, and that was the faster way of me spending RM1,799.

Rush home and first thing to do, is mop floor =P Yea, chief commander instruction, got to do before can play =P After finish, then unboxing time!!

When the box is passed to me, I keep checking around to make sure it's the new iPad, because it's not stated anywhere! How I know if they make mistake and given me the iPad 1? No label or whatsoever, the usual minimalist design. That's how Apple do it.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

I'm in love with the new iPad

If you are Apple worshipper, then you will definitely know that the new iPad is officially launching in Malaysia tomorrow. I'm not really a fans of Apple and also not a keen user for tablet, but I do have an appetite for latest shiny gadget to satisfy my envy eyes. Nothing in the market actually attract me to go get one, but the new iPad is pounding on my heart. With the iPad 2 discounted at only RM1,199 for 16GB WIFI model, should I be buying the iPad 2 instead?

Let's look at the improvement of the new iPad over the iPad 2.

1. 2048x1536 pixels Retina Display. I love the retina display in the iPhone 4, and that's the only reason that makes me buy one. The screen is incredible, and the same incredible screen on a 9.7" new iPad, of course I'm all into it! No gorilla glass here, but it got 44% wider colour gamut that the iPad 2. Also it features fingerprint resistant oleophobic coating. Don't really know what's that, but it's good to have.

2. Dual Core A5X CPU with Quad Core GPU APX comparing to the old Dual Core A5 CPU with 543MP2 GPU. Other than that, the RAM also increase from the pathetic 512MB to 1GB. Lots of people claimed that the iPad 2 is fast enough for daily usage, but with the technology moving in such a fast pace, evolution of apps to cater for more sophisticated users are inevitable. With higher performance, better and more complicated apps will be launch. It's up to budget seriously, but when owning a piece of tech, being on the up-front is important, or else why be a techie? Just watch the idiot box at home better.

3. 5MP rear camera that can also shoots 1080p HD video @ 30fps. Big improvement with features such as auto-focus, auto-exposure, stabilisation, hybrid infrared filter, and face detection. It's kind of weird to have such good camera on the new iPad because you will rarely use it as it looks awkward. But for the same price, it's good to have. Who knows what those apps developer might come out with?

Other than that, others are mainly same. Same size, same design, same factor. It's heavier by almost 50gram weighing 652g now, and also thicker by 0.6mm at 9.4mm now. There are still no memory slots, and the 4G LTE is useless for us. WIFI is standard features, and the Bluetooth is upgraded to 4.0 type with faster connection than the 2.1 in iPad 2.

New iPad 16GB WIFI is priced at RM1,499 and RM300 increment for double memory space of the previous version. 16GB might be enough for iPad 2, but for higher storage requirements to run the faster and higher resolution apps, 32GB is the only way to go. 4G model is not required, as it doesn't work in Malaysia, also 3G is available through tethering from my iPhone 4. Now I need a reason to tell my boss that I'm taking leave tomorrow =P

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Kong Heng Coffee Shop @ Ipoh

This is one of the Ipoh folks all-time favourite place for food, and it's been here forever, older than myself. I don't know how old is this building, but my dad used to frequent this shop when he is still a kid. So go figure, and according to my dad, it maintained exactly the same on how they serve their food, the table, chair and etc. It's really a better place to visit if you are interested with history rather than visiting Ipoh's museum, as it's actually quite crap. Let's take a closer look at the Kong Heng Coffee Shop located in the old town.

The forever standing Kong Heng Coffee Shop lcoated in the old town part of the Ipoh and it's one of the most important nostalgic icon for Ipoh town.

How it looks like within Kong Heng, high ceiling, big column, old floor tiles, steel & wooden window, marble table and wooden chair. Amazing. You just need to take a closer look around the entire shop, it's like that since many many years ago, before I'm even born. No changes, everything is the same. Incredible.

So what's the highlight of this place? Why they can maintain the flow of crowd until today? Let's look at the food, it taste exactly same since I'm kid, and it's wonderful.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Da Tuan Yuan Restaurant @ Klang

This time around, I would like to introduce some good food in Klang town, other than Bak Kut Teh of course. Being a large town with a good number of chinese (majority hokkien), there are always good food to be found. We chinese always love foods and restaurant will just follow wherever we go.

Introducing Da Tuan Yuan restaurant located in Bandar Baru Klang. This post actually a year late, just misplace the photos until digging it out recently. I hope it's still open because it's a very nice restaurant in Klang. This place is a typical chinese restaurant that serve almost any chinese foods you can think of, and we normally call it "Tai Chow" in Malaysia. It opened up last few years ago and it's quite new.

Da Tuan Yuan restaurant is located in the commercial shoplots in Bandar Baru Klang (BBK) and it's on the 2nd phase of the shoplots development (new shoplots) area.

In good weather, they also open up more tables along the walkway and it's truly breezing with good food under the stars. Lots of table around with 2 shoplots and outdoor, but it will be packed on weekends, so go early if you don't like to wait. Let's go to food now.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Putrajaya International Hot Air Balloon 2012 is coming ...

The once in a year Putrajaya International Hot Air Balloon is here again and it's scheduled to held from 15th till 18th March 2012. It's a great event for families and friends, but also importantly, it's one of the major event marked in most photographer's calendar, either professional or newbie. Whoever holding a semi-pro or dSLR camera, don't miss the chance to snap some nice colourful hot air baloon photographs as part of your collection. Shame to say that I never been to this event before, going to participate this time.

The location is in Monumem Alaf Baru in Presinct 2, Putrajaya. For those that's not familiar with Putrajaya, look at the location map in their website The website is rich in content, covering all the itinerary, activities, location, and etc. I copied some of it for sharing here.

Itinerary of the event, the most interesting for me would be the Hot Air Balloon Flight and the Night Glow Show & Fireworks. But it's 8-9 hours apart, what I'm going to do there??

Event map for the day, and it clearly show where to do what and etc. Good information.

Some photos extracted from the website, just wish I can get shots like these ....

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sepang International Circuit with my Fiat Coupe 20VT+

Life is suppose to be great and I love living it. I believe human are suppose to live to enjoy life, and that has been my life philosophy ever since However, nothing is free in this world. As I grow older and started to climb the career ladder, everything slowly becoming more affordable and my dream life started to come true. One of my hobby is car and everything start from the ownership of Alfa Romeo 147. I've been eyeing to get a chance to drive in the Sepang International Circuit (SIC) since then, but it needs a very deep commitment and also expensive preparation.

I didn't have a chance until 4th of February 2012. RCA organised a Prosperity Track Day at entry fees of RM350 for each car & driver, I grab the chance and register myself with my Fiat Coupe.

Sepang International Circuit is the home of the car sport in Malaysia, and I think everyone should try it at least once in their lifetime. I did my 21km marathon here last year with Energiser Night Race, but it's totally different kind of adrenaline rush standing on the paddock with my driving shoe than my running shoe. The track day start from 4.00pm till 7.00pm and we got 3 hours to burn our tyres. Great.

Reaching the track, we are brought up to the media room in 1st floor for briefing and registration. Safety briefing is given and within minutes, we are done and ready to roll.

Foh Sam Dim Sum Restaurant @ Ipoh

Everyone know what Ipoh is famous of. Pretty girls, taugeh chicken and of course, the Dim Sum as well. Growing up in Ipoh, it's part of the culture to go eat Dim Sum in the morning with the whole family, and we did just that, but only with a new member, my baby boy =)

If you are from Ipoh, then you will know the Dim Sum in other town is really bad, not that they are not good, but not as good as Ipoh. Lots of people can't tell the difference, but it's quite obvious actually. However, I don't really like to visit the Dim Sum restaurant in Ipoh, because it's always packed, there are exemption though. We go nonetheless because it's been really long time since we gather for morning Dim Sum. Choice of restaurant, the new majestic Foh San restaurant in the town. It's the most recognised name for Dim Sum around Malaysia and it's also the most packed restaurant. Holiday season, just want to enjoy the crowd sometimes =) Let's see.

It's best to have a lot of people when eating dim sum, as that's when you can order a lot of variety and test every bit of the specialty they can offer. It's pointless to eat dim sum with just 2-3 person. With an army of us, we ordered the above. So beautiful, abundance of wealth (as chinese put food as wealth. the more you put, the more wealthy you are, hehe. that's why chinese like to put mirror opposite the dining table to double the food / wealth).

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012 Registration

Since my last full marathon event, my body suffered and I got into fatigue mode. Within 2 months, I fall asick for more than 4 times, and that's why taking care of own body after full marathon event is very important. I'm recovering and to keep my ownself healthy, I registered for the upcoming Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012 that will be held on 24th June 2012.

Early bird promotion is up till end of this month at RM55 for 21km runners, and afterwards it's priced at RM65. No reason to pay more, so whoever interested, go register now. In addition to that, something new is that now the organiser charge for issuance and delivery of hard-copy certificate for RM3.00. That's absurd in my opinion, why charge?? Electronic copy is available online, but still, weird. I want to certificate, that's why my sum is RM58 instead. Not happy.

Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012 is one of the formal event for runners and the half marathon distance is 21.178km, in accordance to distance set by the regulations. As shown below, starting point is Dataran Merdeka, run towards KL Sentral, turn into Federal Highway, turn into Loke Yew, turn in Jalan Cheras, Jalan Tun Razak, Bukit Bintang, KLCC, and finally to Jalan Raja and back to Dataran Merdeka.

As we used to travel these places in cars and with the traffic jam, it seems quite far away, but that's just 21km distance, and sounds incredible to cover almsot the entire KL. If you are impress by this, try look at the 42km route, it covered basically everywhere you can think of. It's crazy, cannot believe that I actually completed the 42km last year in Penang. Maybe later this year, but now still got nightmare on earlier experience =P

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Penang Bridge International Marathon 2011 - My 1st Full Marathon

Last year is the busiest year of my life and I accomplished many things. One of the most remarkable thing I've done is to complete a Full Marathon run and till to-day, I'm still resting trying to recover my body after almost 2 months from the event. However, I never regretted the experience as I know, finally I'm in the top 1% of the 7 billions world population to have ever complete a full marathon within qualifying time! Yes, I completed the 42km run within the 7 hours qualifying time, so grateful. It's not all glory, read on for the details and how I struggle to complete the astonishing distance.

This is me with my trusted gear taken before leaving the hotel to embark the important milestone in my life. A00781, that's tag that I've been aiming to wear since I started running back 2 years ago. Finally. I'm in my most healthy body ever since college and unfortunately my body weight didn't drop but instead I replaced those fats with muscles as I felt stronger and stronger everyday I train.

As my little baby is with us during this run, my wife cannot fetch me over to the event and give me support, so she stay in the hotel with our baby. Therefore I didn't bring a camera and only snap some photos with my iPhone. Bear with me on the bad quality of the photos, enjoy =)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Fiat Coupe 20VT+

I've changed my ride again, and this time is less than 3 years since my ownership of Alfa Romeo. It's not that the Alfa Romeo is not performing up to my expectaction, it's a fantastic car and I totally agree with Jeremy Clarkson that you are not a true petrolhead until you've owned an Alfa Romeo. However, life needs to move on, so with my eager thirst for more power, I took the plunge to jump into the power of turbo despite warning from my family and friends.

My next choice of upgrade, the Fiat Coupe 20VT+. My choice of car seems to be always circle around the brand that's not liked by Malaysian, but there is a good reason for it. My old ride Alfa Romeo 147 2.0 Selespeed Twinspark is churning out 150bhp and 181Nm and I need something better than it. For a mere mortal like me with a limited budget, going turbo seems to be the only way. Further with continuous poison from the Italia Auto Club that I frequented, it's easy to be converted to love the big brother of Alfa Romeo brand, the Fiat.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Solution for Stucked with Low Resolution Screen in Windows Vista / Windows 7

This is a record for myself and also whoever that face the same problem, a solution that I've been searching for almost 3 years and finally I cracked it! If you notice my computer gear listed at the right side of the blog, I'm running the following hardware:

Mainboard: ASUS P5K-PL
Graphic Card: XFX GF 9600GT (650MHz) 512MB DDR3 256bit
Monitor: 22" Samsung 2232BW 2ms 3000:1 (Analogue + Digital)

Nothing wrong with the combination and some techie might ask why I use a cheapskate mainboard? Well, it serve the minimum requiremnets that I need and I don't hack the mainboard for more juice, so no different to me. Problem is with the monitor. Samsung 2232BW display is very vivid and sharp but unfortunately that Samsung is only famous in the world of television, and not personal computer. Samsung never update their monitor driver and it's daunting in the world of technology that move in light speed.

I'm running Windows XP when I assembled the unit and I'm still stucked with it for almost 3 years till yesterday, because I couldn't get the monitor to display the optimum 1680x1050 resolution in Windows Vista or Windows 7. Last week I got a bit bored so decided to play with it again trying to complete my long quest to solve the problem. Finally I manage the find the culprit of the whole problem. If you have problem with resolution stucked in low range in Windows Vista or newer, then read on as 99% of the people out there have the same problem.

Ugly stucked at 1024x768 =(

Reveal of culprit, EDID. EDID stands for Extended Display Identification Data that eventually what Windows Vista has been start using that change how the communication between the monitor and Windows works. For those people that stucked with lousy-no-update monitor manufacturer (like Samsung), they are most likely to have this problem. With the old driver, it doesn't transmit EDID information to Windows and it get treated as an old monitor that's running 1024x768. There is no way to change it, no matter what you do to the graphic card or mainboard driver, as Windows cannot talk to the monitor. There are two solutions.

1. Modify the connection on the monitor to break the EDID communication between Monitor & Windows. It's hardware modification and I don't have the plan to damage any of my expensive stuff.

2. Hack the EDID and give a fake communication to Windows. It works by manually writting the EDID information on the monitor driver to tell the Windows what we want the Windows to recognise.

I'm doing no.2 solution here, as I prefer soft solution rather than breaking hardware. You will need 2 programs, first is Phoenix and second is MonInfo. Both link is available as highlighted, so download it. Install the latest driver for your monitor and run the Phoenix. In Phoenix, click registry toolbar and select your monitor driver. If your monitor driver doesnt show up then you are using wrong driver, try other driver and start over. Once recognised, then click on the pencil toolbar for changes to the information. Go to standard timings tab and change the Timing ID #1 to your monitor optimum resolution.

Example for mine of 1680x1050 @ 60Hz, I set H.Active pixels to 1680, 60Hz refresh rate and 16:10 aspect ratio.

Disabled the rest of the Timing ID if you wish to avoid confusion and dont touch the rest. Press file and save the EDID. Then run the MonInfo and open the EDID file that you just saved. If MonInfo doesn't recognise the EDID file then you are doing something wrong. Re-do everything to be sure. Once opened, go to file and click create INF and save it. Go to your computer hardware control panel and choose to update the monitor driver manually and choose this file. Once installed, restart the computer and you should see the new resolution is available for you to choose. Kau tim!

My beautiful 1680x1050@60Hz running Windows 7.

The above solved my problem with VGA cable, and I havent' try the digital HDMI cable yet. If your HDMI cable doesnt work with this, then stick to VGA cable. Better than none. Cheers!

PS: for those that's adventurous, this method can be use to hack the display, but do at own risk ok. As it might "smoke" your monitor, hehe ...