Archive for May, 2006|Monthly archive page

Windows Vista Beta 2 is looking good

In OS on 26 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

Windows Vista Beta 2 - Build 5384After using Windows Vista Beta 2 (Build 5384.4) for about one whole day, I find that this is the most polish Windows Vista OS ever since Microsoft releases CTP build at the PDC 05.  It seems that Microsoft has gotten their act together to deliver a much better experience.  The look and feel are all iron out nicely with more consistency.

Performance is also much better.  It used to be that after you login, you’ve got to wait a while before you can get hold of the command to order the computer around.  This time round a fade out and fade in, then you can straight make use of the quick launch bar, the start menu or even right click to personalize your computer.  Even the installation take shorter time than last build.

Its getting better and better; I am looking forward for the actual release so that I can use it daily for all my regular business.


Office 2007 Beta 2 is out for the public

In Software on 24 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

Yes it is finally out.  Click on the link below and try it out.  Go ahead, its a good software, worth the time you spend on it to try (or should I say test?).

I am definitely going to check this new release of Office 2007 out.  New usability idea, can I use that “Ribbon” in my application development?

Windows Vista Beta 2 is out – But its not for public yet

In OS on 24 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

Windows VistaSo Windows Vista Beta 2 (Build 5384.4) is out for Connect (those who are in the Beta program) and MSDN Subscribers.  I am currently downloading the iso and hopefully will be able to install it come tomorrow.  During the keynotes for WinHEC, I think it is also mentioned that public will be able to get their hands on Windows Vista Beta 2 by this coming few weeks.  So anyone who is not on the above 2 programs will need to be patience and wait for it to go public.

I believe a bunch of bugs has been solved for this Beta 2 and hopefully there will also be some performance boost from the last CTP.

Windows SDK, WinFX and Expression suite latest Beta are all out

In Programming on 24 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

In fact it seems that Microsoft has made all new developing tools compatible for Windows Vista Beta 2 available all at the same time after the OS itself is released.  You can get these software by following these links:

FIFA Worldcup 2006

In Sports on 22 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

Its another 18 days before the actual kick off of the year’s hottest soccer event, the FIFA Worldcup 2006.  18 days seems to be very long, especially when the media has been hyping up the event to get it to become hotter and hotter.  Electronic Arts come to the rescue; It has launched a new game call 2006 FIFA Worldcup.  The game promises to quench your thirst before the real thing come this 9th June.

I was playing this game at my brother-in-law house.  The music, the atmosphere, the experience are all the closest you can get to experience the real thing; Especially when the graphic is so stunning.  Except for the occasional slow down, which can be tolerated, this game can definitely quench that thirst before the coming of the event.  My Brazil team has reached the knock out round with perfect score, I am now aiming for that coveted cup.

What does AD and BC means?

In Personal on 21 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

A lot of people will know or at least remember that BC means “Before Christ” but few will know or remember what AD means.  AD actually stands for “Anno Domini” and it is actually Latin for “in the year of Our Lord” which to Christian refers to Jesus Christ.

There is now a new trend to use CE to replace AD and BCE to replace BC.  CE stands for “Common Era” and BCE stands for “Before Common Era”.  This is so as to be sensitive to non-Christian.  The usage of CE and BCE is also more accurate than AD and BC.  Today technology reveals that Jesus Christ was not born in the year AD 1, but actually in the year 4 BC.  So to say that 1 BC is “Before Christ” is actually not very accurate.

Some people are saying that using CE and BCE is just trying to be “politically correct” but let’s forget about whether we are trying to be “politically correct” just remember that using CE and BCE is more for politeness, consideration and accuracy.

Capable or Premium Ready?

In OS on 20 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

Vista CapableMicrosoft has officially announce the actual system requirement to run Windows Vista when its launch in Jan 2007.  A logo system will also be implemented so that consumer will know whether the system they buy now will be able to run Windows Vista or not.  A system that has a logo of Windows Vista Capable can run Windows Vista’s core experiences at a minimum.  Core experiences of Windows Vista include things such as innovations in organizing and finding information, security, and reliability.  Some features like the Windows Aero Glass effect will need additional hardware upgrade.

Premium Ready PC will give you even better Windows Vista experience like the Windows Aero user experience (actually currently other than the Windows Aero glass effect, I don’t know what “even better experience” gives).  Below is a summary of the requirements.

A Windows Vista Capable PC includes at least:

  • A modern processor (at least 800MHz).
  • 512 MB of system memory.
  • A graphics processor that is DirectX 9 capable.

A Windows Vista Premium Ready PC includes at least:

  • 1 GHz 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor.
  • 1 GB of system memory.
  • A graphics processor that runs Windows Aero.
  • 128 MB of graphics memory.
  • 40 GB of hard drive capacity with 15 GB free space.
  • DVD-ROM Drive.
  • Audio output capability.
  • Internet access capability.

How to use that Aero Glass API?

In Programming on 19 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

I have a comment asking me “how do i add instal the shell api on my xp machine”.  The answer to this question is actually quite simple; Just install the latest Windows SDK onto your XP machine and you will get the header file to those Aero API.

However, you can’t test your program under Windows XP; Those API will simply fail.  Desktop Window Manager’s API will only function under Windows Vista.  So you will need the latest compatible Windows Vista CTP build to verify your program.  Have fun!

Mission Impossible?

In Movies on 18 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

To uphold the image of the Shanghai city, China Censorship Board has asked M:I III producer and director to delete certain scenes that are deemed “harmful” to the image of Shanghai.

The dirty laundry shown are the problem here.  In one scene laundry is shown hanging from balconies.  In another there are bamboo poles all over the rooftop with underwears hanging.

So will M:I III be a mission impossible in China?

How serious is Singapore Government on payment of TV License?

In Personal on 18 May, 2006 at 3:00 pm

They are dead serious; They will haul you to courts if you ignore all their 3 reminders, including one that is sent by registered mail.  And if you still ignore the court order, a warrant of arrest will be issued against you.

I was unlucky enough to face the music, but it is not a warrant of arrest yet.  It was a court order.  TV licensing is under Media Development Authority (MDA).  Every property that has a TV must apply for a TV license.  The court order was sent by MDA through registered mail.  Since the letter just bear the logo of MDA, I thought it was some advertisement and didn’t open it straight away.  When I finally found a chance to open the letter, it was a court order from the Subordinate Court.  To my horror as well, I have missed the time frame to pay a compound fine so that I won’t need to appear in court.

Thinking that I will need to go to court (my very first time if I did and I was thinking that at least it will be an unforgettable experience), I just called MDA today to make sure that there was no other way out, that I must face the Magistrate and give some explanation.  Surprisingly the MDA officer told me that I was still in time for the compounded fine if I go down to their office today to pay the fine.  So I did, and I got myself onto their automatic deduction system, so that I won’t forget again.