Nov 7, 2011

Smart Sucks.

Posted by Goldi on Nov 7, 2011 at 10:18 AM 2 comments
I am talking about the SMART telecom service. I tried to use their promo SMARTalk Lite 15 as I need to reach a few loved ones to check if they'd be able to come on my wedding. SMARTalk Lite 15 gives unlimited calls from 1am to 11am to all Smart networks. So I registered this morning, and thinking this saves me a lot of money because I can get to talk to them without worrying about per minute charges and I have until 11am pa to do that. I got the confirmation at 8:48 AM, which still gives me 2 hours plus a few more minutes to call any of them in the province.

So I immediately dialed at once. Instruction says use prefix *6402 + the smart number you're calling. I did that. But.. IT DOESN'T CONNECT. The heck. It's now 10:03 AM and I am still not able to talk to a single Smart subscriber I am trying to reach. The call gets cut off even before it's connected. I don't even hear a "your call cannot be completed" nor "all lines are busy now" message. Now I'm frustrated. 15 pesos gone to Smart's pocket without me being able to use even a few seconds of their service.

I am still not sure though if they start counting from 1 AM the next day from the day you registered, but it doesn't make much sense. I know the service usually gets activated from the time you registered it and ends at exactly how many hours it said it's valid, not until what time their promo is effective. For this instance, mine's going to end at exactly 8:48 am tomorrow. But it doesn't make much sense if I am able to register now but not able to use the service if I'm still well within the time their unlicall promo is active. Globe works that way so all along I thought it should be the same for all networks. I still have to see if it works the other way but if it's not, Smart will prove themselves to be a  money-hoarding company with extremely crappy services. This is not the first instance my Smart load was gone for nothing. That's the very reason why I don't use my Smart sim that much anymore. Mahal na nga mga promo nila, anlakas pang kumain ng load. Dugas!

I hope the people from Smart gets to read this. I might just be a prepaid user but you know, if your services are excellent, I could actually consider getting a postpaid plan and you'd get my money permanently and on a regular basis. But no thank you na lang.

Update: I was not able to use the service, not a single minute or second call. Crap talaga.

Nov 1, 2011

New Phone: Nokia 101 Dual-sim

Posted by Goldi on Nov 1, 2011 at 12:40 PM 4 comments
Current status: Taking a break from work
Listening to: Terrified by Katherine McPhee

I got myself a new Nokia 101, the cheapest dual-sim Nokia phone that is currently out in the market. I got mine for Php 1,450 from Fone Style Accessories store at the ground level of SM Bicutan yesterday. Not really the cheapest price, but this phone is currently selling like hotcakes so the store I inquired that happens to be selling this at only Php 1,399 already had it sold out. It's CellBoy, located at the same floor, and they had it on sale but it's already out of stock when I inquired.

I was initially looking for a MyPhone B15 duo but I've already asked all of the stores at SM Bicutan and they're all out of it. Well except for one who's selling packaged with a 2GB memory card at Php 1,790. I don't need the extra memory and even if I compute it by the cheapest price I know I get can this phone for which is Php 1,299 plus the getting an additional 2GB memory for Php 300 the most, it's still way too expensive for their price so I left it. After all, I'm just getting a second phone so my priority is budget. They said though that this phone is already phased out so I got my second option, Nokia 101. Certainly not cheaper, but I'm sure is of good quality.

I've taken pictures of my newly acquired gadget, the Nokia 101 dual-sim. It comes in 2 colors: black & red. I got the red one because my sister also got this phone in black and so I got the other color to avoid confusion.


Mine's red. The faded hand strap is mine. It's not included in the package.

Both black and red colors look nice (of course depending on one's preference), so getting the red color is not much of an issue for me. Besides, black is so common and most of the phones I owned is in black. My main phone, which is also a Nokia, the phased out model 6220 classic is also in black.

with its plastic from Fone Style

The receipt with the warranty card. Decided to keep a copy in case I re-sell this item.

Inside the box is just the charger, the headset, and the manuals. Nothing more.

The phone with its headset

Menu. I opted for the list view. It's also available in grid view.

My phone's software version. You can get yours by typing *#0000#

Back. This comes with a BL-5CB battery which
according to the specs lasts up to 25 days on standby with this phone.

The back without the battery. You'll see the 2 sim beds.

Summary of features:
  • Dual-sim, simultaneous standby.
  • Plays mp3 files
  • Support up to 16GB
  • Up to 25 days standby
  • 1.8" TFT display
  • 3.5 mm AV connector for standard earphones
  • GSM dual-band
  • Torch light
  • FM radio


What I liked about this phone:
  • A basic phone with an expandable memory. It claims to support up to 16GB, and the slot is strategically placed at the side of the phone for hot swapping and easier access. I haven't tried using a 16GB card though so I can't support that claim. I'm not sure if anyone's going to do that, but I won't because I have my iPod Touch for my portable media player and storage.
  • The torch light. Very useful indeed, especially when I rummage my chaotic bag for my stuffs in a public transportation and when looking for things in small dark spaces.
  • The 3.5 mm AV connector, though I'm not really using it. But I find it brilliant as one can use a standard earphone if they left the in-box headset. I've tried my iPod earphones and it worked, even with the radio. I initially thought that you can't play the radio without the Nokia headset but it appears that, the radio can't just be played without anything plugged in the AV connector. I don't know if a standard headset will work with this phone though. I didn't have the chance to try.
  • One inbox for all. Unlike other dual-sim phones like MyPhone for example, where the messages are stored 2 separate inboxes. It's not much of a bother really for me if that's something that I have to live with, but finding this feature of Nokia 101 is liberating. The messages are all in one inbox, determined by an icon on the right side to indicate from which sim the message was received. It's still more time consuming to exit and enter submenus just to access your messages so this feature is really cool.
  • Message counter. They've included a message counter for the number of SMS sent from each sim. Sweet! The message counter helps me see how much I saved and how much I was able to utilize my unlimited texting services.
  • Speaking clock as alarm tone. Surely, the time I should wake up cannot be more emphasized. Hehehe.
  • The finger friendly island keypad. It's soft and sensitive enough for pressing. A text addict's best friend.

What I didn't like:
  • There's no option to change the date format. It's dd.mm.yyyy by default. I would've wanted to be able to switch between mm.dd.yyyy & yyyy.mm.dd formats, but this is tolerable. Still a little disappointing.
  • No option to change the time format too. It's only in 12hr, no option for a 24hr clock or military time. Pinanindigan talaga ang pagiging basic. Gara.
  • I find the torch light somehow weak. It only has one LED and it has this lens part (I don't know if there's any specific term for this) that spreads out the light into a big open-mouth smile shape and I think it's the cause why it's weak. I prefer a light that's concentrated in the middle so at least there's a part that's strong, and I prefer that it darker places. MyPhone's better at this, having 2 LEDs and concentrated light. I don't want mine dispersed.
  • I would've loved an FM radio that doesn't require a plugged headset to play. MyPhone B15 duo has this feature.
  • The speaker at the back makes the sound weak if you place the phone front side up. If you're using this phone as an alarm clock, I suggest putting it face down so you're sure that you'd be awakened by its sound. The same principle would apply if you'll put the phone in loud speaker during a call. Could've been better if the speaker is placed anywhere on the side of the phone.
  • Earpiece loudness could be better. I've had better quality in my MyPhone, even when their speakers are compared. MyPhone wins in this part. It's really loud.
  • You cannot transfer files from your memory card to phone memory and vice versa. I wanted to have a custom ring and message alert tone but I'm not able to because you'd only be able to get 3rd party files if you have an extra memory storage plugged in the slot. I don't have a spare memory card so I just thought of copying at least a few in the phone memory for more custom options but the phone doesn't have this feature. Well you'd probably be able to get additional content in your phone memory if it's received OTA (over-the-air), not by hardware. Another sucker.

I've also read in forums that this phone has a restart problem, and voice leakage where whoever is beside you would be able to hear what your caller is saying even if you're not in loudspeaker mode. So far, I have not experienced any restart, having used a TM/Globe, Smart Buddy, and Sun SIMs but I'm still on my day 1 so I might be wrong. I have used this on a call too and I'm not sure of the voice leakage thing because I don't have anyone with me when I used it on a call. I have a wireless landline SIM which I haven't tried with this yet. I would just add to this post if something unusual happens when I get to use this with my wireless landline SIM.

Overall, my verdict is so-so. I find this phone not so great, but not so bad either. It can always be an option. But this is really just a basic phone, even with an mp3 player. Yes it can play mp3s, but don't expect much on the sound quality, and most phones now can play mp3 anyway.

Do you plan to get this phone too? I hope this post somehow helped. Have a nice day :).

Aug 23, 2011

Wanna know if your computer is a male or a female?

Posted by Goldi on Aug 23, 2011 at 11:54 PM 4 comments
I just saw this in my Facebook newsfeed tonight and tried it out of curiosity.

=============================================================

1. Open Notepad
2. Type the following line in notepad (Or simply copy paste):
CreateObject("SAPI.SpVoice").Speak"You are stubborn but I really love you honey"
3. Save file as "computer_gender.vbs"
4. Run the file by double clicking on it. If you hear a male voice, you have a guy; If you hear a female voice, you got a girl

Note: Turn on the speaker before running the file.

=============================================================


Kulit nito! Mine's a female. =D

Ikaw? What's your computer's gender?

Feb 26, 2011

Reading with Dry Eyes

Posted by Goldi on Feb 26, 2011 at 11:27 AM 6 comments
The book with my marker & used Bible on top of my laptop
I am currently reading the book When God Writes Your Love Story and I'm already halfway through it. It was lent to me by Shy, kasama ko sa Yuppies. I've started reading it 2 weeks ago before I fall asleep and I was actually not making much progress with that--Ive just moved to about 3-5 pages. So This morning, when I woke up early, I decided to sit on it as I rest my eyes from excessive staring at the computer monitor. My eyes were at random times feel burning pains which causes me to get teary eyed even when I'm not really crying. At times, I can't even open my eyes, I had to shut them for a while to be soothed by the tears it produced. And I seriously think wetting it with cold water would just make it worse. I've read somewhere in the internet that what I am having are symptoms of dry eyes.

So after reading that article from Wikipedia, I've realized I am not resting my eyes at all. Hehehe. Malamang may magagalit na naman sa 'kin nito sa katigasan ng ulo ko. But I feel that reading from a printed book is already a very welcome break for my eyes. I've been spending a great deal of time in front of the computer kasi. I'm about to take a bath pa naman in a few hours because I'm headed to a church friends' wedding this afternoon. And I have to perfectly polish our records to be ready for reporting by Monday. It gets really very hard for me when my procrastinator side kicks in. I want to kill it!

About the book, I find it full of insights. As I've mentioned, I'm still halfway through it. Had I have nothing up today, I can probably finish it in one sitting, because I find it very interesting. I had gone halfway through in a matter of 2-3 hours. It kind of helped me in knowing what to do with my own God written love story. The couple who wrote it were truly blessed, and I'm praying to God I'd have the same kind of relationship with my future husband. I know God will take care of it.

I'm planning to write a review and a summary of the parts or lines in the book that had the most impact on me, or those that I was able to identify with. I do hope though that I'd be able to do it. It would be great if I'd be able to share what I learned from the book, and for me to keep a record of what I learned as well.

When someone shares something of value with you and you benefit from it, you have a moral obligation to share it with others.
~Chinese proverb

Feb 23, 2011

Love is Waiting

Posted by Goldi on Feb 23, 2011 at 6:37 AM 7 comments
I suddenly felt a surge of emotion in my heart last night, that it was threatening to burst on me and make me spill words that I've been mostly afraid to admit to anyone whenever I start to feel it, during the course of my life. I suddenly had this longing inside me to tell what I feel, but then something inside me tells that it's not yet the right time. I changed my ym status to "I feel like my heart's gonna burst" and it immediately attracted the attention of close friends added in my ym list. Nix, being the polite girl she is, checked what's with it right away without asking too much info that might sound like she's prying on something very personal already. That's what I like about her. I told her it is indeed too personal that I think I can't share it to anyone at the moment and that the status just tells what I currently feel... I just don't feel comfy sharing it with anyone at the moment. I was praying for God's take on this and was asking Him to give me an immediate answer if possible because I was at that moment struggling of what's trying to burst my heart out.

I could've easily spilled this to that person had I not been able to hold it, thanks to Nix for being fast in asking :D. I can't give info to her, but I know the girl has a quite good intuition so I asked her what does she feel about it, and maybe we can start from there, so that I can also help myself. She then started off with checking how things are going. Then I told her I currently feel that my feelings are trying to overrule my mind. She quoted a line from the movie Fireproof: "Don't follow your heart because your heart can be deceived." Agree naman ako sa sinabi nya, and it felt like those few words made the juices in my brain flow to let me think clearly about the situation. I have to wait on God first. Patience. She also told me that God sometimes speak to her through songs and gave me two Brooke Fraser songs that I might want to check, "Faithful" and "Love is Waiting". My eyes caught the "Love is Waiting" first and searched for it in Youtube. And upon checking out the message, I can say it describes exactly what I felt I need to do.. or to say.



In the autumn on the ground,
between the traffic and the ordinary sounds
I am thinking signs and seasons while a north wind blows through
I watch as lovers pass me by
Walking stories - whos and hows and whys
Musing lazily on love, pondering you

I'll give it time, give it space and be still for a spell
When it's time to walk that way we wanna walk it well

[CHORUS:]
I'll be waiting for you baby
I'll be holding back the darkest night
Love is waiting til we're ready, til it's right
Love is waiting

It's my caution not the cold
There's no other hand that I would rather hold
The climate changes, I'm singing for the strangers about you
Don't keep time, slow the pace
Honey hold on if you can
the bets are getting surer now... that you're my man

[CHORUS]

[BRIDGE:]
I could write a million songs about the way you say my name
I could live a lifetime with you and then do it all again
and like I can't force the sun to rise or hasten summer's start,
neither should I rush my way into your heart


I was like... this is bull's eye. Shot right at the target. LoL! Ganda pa ng pagkakanta. And after listening to the song, I felt peace in my heart, and it got tamed. I chose to keep singing this song while I pray to God to let me know when would be the right time to reveal anything and how I should do it.

Love is patient. ~1 Corinthians 13:4

Feb 19, 2011

Overtime on a Saturday Morning

Posted by Goldi on Feb 19, 2011 at 7:04 AM 2 comments
I'm currently rendering an overtime on a rest day. Half-day lang naman. Though I'm not sure if it would be appropriate for me to ask for a pay for this because during the days I am not doing what I'm supposed to do resulting into this piled up job I currently have hence the OT request, I am getting paid in full. I even get paid in full during my absences when I got sick for a whole week but I think that's just right. I was just thinking I'd be unfair to my boss if I still ask for a pay for this OT request, though he's the one who really requested it. I'm handling the company finances and it's now in really bad shape and we already lost track. So I need to catch up on this right away or else, I'd be having the same issue I had this month in processing our salaries. Our salaries have been delayed because I am not doing my job properly. Shame on me.

Feb 3, 2011

Makeup Went Wrong

Posted by Goldi on Feb 3, 2011 at 10:09 AM 5 comments
I went to a debut of a close friend in church last Saturday, January 29, held at Vivere Hotel in Alabang. Since it's a special and kind of formal event, I needed to dress up, and that includes dressing up my face too. I am not used to having makeup in my face and when I was younger--I really didn't like putting on makeup but as I grew older, I realized this is a necessity for girls or women. I actually hated the idea of putting on makeup before but later on realized that there will be times I will not have a choice. I need to wear makeup specially during special events.

So as I was saying, I went to this debut and had to wear makeup. We were running late and so I didn't have much time to have options. I have a friend with me and the idea of spending thousand bucks on makeup for a one night event which is only a debut (buti sana kung awards night at bibigyan kami ng award at madaming paparazzi, we can probably get away with spending 1500 php--this is at Bench Fix--with just hair and makeup) so we went out to scout for a cheaper salon that will be able to do our hair and makeup right away... inside Festival Mall. Talk about not having much option while under time constraint.

We found Freshaire as the one who offers the cheapest hair and makeup in that mall, where makeup is done for only 200 pesos and hair, 400 pesos. However, we had to wait for about an hour before they do us and we no longer have much time so we headed to the next cheapest salon available--Going Straight. They do hair and makeup and hair is priced depending on the length. My friend and I have the same hair lengths, and they priced us almost Php 900 for hair and makeup.

We had our hair and makeup done there because they're able to take us in right away, sabay pa kami. It was a guy who did our hair and makeup and he's only one so while I wait for my turn 'cause he did my friend first, I went to get dressed. He made sure he did everything fast because we're running late and it took me some time to get dressed so when I went back, he's almost finished with my friend. My turn came and he did my makeup first, following the hair. Masyado yata nagmamadali si kuya, he forgot to apply foundation on my face. He did my eye makeup because that is the most challenging and complicated part of my face--or with any girl naman yata kasi it's where most of the colors go. So blend blend... with layer after layers of colors and here's what I got:


eye makup went wrong

That's me with the hair done na din. My hair almost went wrong too because initially, he did a cobra style daw tawag dun, to me it looked like I rode an open windowed jeep running at 150kph speed, with my hair not coming back to its place after. So I told him just raise my top a little and pull half of my hair back. I so didn't like everything talaga but sorry for me, I don't have a choice.

Yes--I went to the party looking like that. I just tried to carry it as much as I can but really, I was very disappointed. And we're late. I still had fun in the party. I don't want to ruin my night with that, though it made a big part in the event. The theme of the party is MTV style nga pala and I was trying to look like a korean pop star, which was an epic fail.

This is a lesson learned for me. And because of this, I've been watching makeup tutorials for asian eyes in Youtube. My eyes are a challenge because I have hooded lids--I have double lids but when my eyes open, the crease hides under, making my eyes look like I have mono lids or no lids at all. My eyes don't have definition or depth. It's very flat, like the typical asian eyes. And it's small, and chinky, and my brows are very high. Hirap makeup-an.

I saw in the tutorials that I'm going to need to use a lot of color talaga, even if I just want to create a simple look. I hope to learn to do my own makeup in the future to save me from spending a lot of money for something that will just extremely disappoint me after.

Jan 26, 2011

Hand-Formed Pots

Posted by Goldi on Jan 26, 2011 at 7:54 AM 5 comments
I was going through my old blog posts and decided to this share again which was one of my favorites. This is a reflection of my devotion way back January 14, 2006...

It was about tests and trials or troubles in life. It was compared or described in the way hand-formed pots are made. We are the pots, and the process the pots go through are the trials we experience in life.

Hand-formed pots are made in a process that allows the spirit of the artist (potter) to speak through the finished work with particular directness and intimacy. Like pots, we are "hand-formed" by our Maker, with "particular directness and intimacy" and that each of us is formed in a unique way for a unique work: "We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them" (Ephesians 2:10).

We were always told that we are all uniquely created, and the Scripture states that we are made for good works. As I read on it, I've thought of the process pots go through until it is finished. All pots go through the same kind of "cooking process" or preparation; first it is shaped by the potter and then it is "fired" in a kiln. There it is cooked (burned) and dried. And then some are even thrust into a smoldering sawdust pile and remains there until it is finished. The more "painful" the process, the more refined and elegant is the finished product.

I'm currently going through some painful trials and troubles in my life. And I also have friends who are going through different but the same painful experiences and have confided their sentiments to me. It helps to think that you are not the only who goes through the same unpleasant situations, that you are not alone, so it won't make you think that God is being hard on you only, and that he Has no favoritism.

But the pot making made me appreciate the trials more. Yes, the process is so painful that we sometimes can't help but to grimace in pain, but thinking how we will make an "elegant pot" after made me accept it, rather than question God why He has to give me such discomforts. A friend told me (Rhoan, I am talking about you. You may not know it but you really blessed me and uplifted my spirit with these words), that maybe the reason why God is giving us these, for it seems like all of us in the worship team are afflicted, is because He's preparing us for a bigger task. And instead of grumbling and feeling sad, he was happy about it! Sabi pa niya, "nae-excite na tuloy ako!" (He said "I feel excited"). Grabe Rhoan, nahawa mo ako. I can't help but smile when you mentioned those words. It is also through you when you mentioned those encouraging words that I saw how sometimes God speaks to us through friends. ^_^

I like how they wrote it in The Message Bible translation what Paul said in James 1: 2-4. It said "Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don't try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way."

Trials exist, not to break us but to complete us. We might be going through the same pain, or some might be undergoing more painful ones, but we must know that without these things, we will not be complete. God's purpose was not just to make us complete, but to make us beautiful and perfect, not lacking anything.



image from google
image from google

Maybe the reason why we are still hurting is because God is not finished with us yet, or like what Rhoan said, He may be preparing us for a bigger task. Our God is a God of happy endings, so if you are not yet happy, then it is not yet the end. Whichever it is, we should not be bitter but rather be thankful that we go through these things, because it is also for our good, that we be made perfect. God loves us, and He only wants the best for us. ^_^

Jan 22, 2011

Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5: A User's Review

Posted by Goldi on Jan 22, 2011 at 8:15 AM 3 comments
Alright! Here's my much awaited personal review of my new gadget, the Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5. I've blogged a few days ago about my plan to get this little piece of wonder tool and actually, I got it on that same day. LoLs!

I bought this from Kimstore at Php 11,900. Way cheaper than how much you will get it from the malls, which I believe at this point ranges from about 22,000 - 24,000 Php. I have been shopping for this item for a long time already and so far, Kimstore is one of the cheapest that sell this, brand new and with warranty. I got the black color as what I mentioned with my previous post. Now on with the review. :)

 Primary reasons why I decided to get this over a wide range of other compact digital cameras:
  1. It's an all-weather, rugged camera. Waterproof to as deep as 3m/10ft (for 60 minutes. Based on Sony testing standards), shock-proof to a drop height of 1.5m/5ft, dust-proof, and freeze-proof down to to -10◦C.
  2. It's super slim at 17.7mm thickness, and almost the same size as a credit card (pictures will be shown for this)
  3. Takes great pictures on low-light conditions, thanks to the Exmor R™ CMOS Sensor

...Plus it's a Sony digicam which has already established a name when it comes to taking clear pictures.

Aesthetics
The Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5 belongs to the line of compact cameras. And mind you, this one is ULTRA compact--which I liked most about it. I've always been after the handiness of a gadget, as I own a number of them and carry them almost all the time. I have 2 phones, and I carry around my favorite of all the gadgets I own, the Apple iPod Touch 4G, 32GB. So if there's anything I first consider when I shop for a gadget, it's its handiness and compactness, to fit in a decent sized purse or bag.

It's so small it's just the size of a credit card. And I find it soooo cool.

tx5 with card
The TX5 beside my Unisilver warranty card

tx5 under card

I find this camera beautiful, owing to its diminutive size. The body, as I see it, looks like it's made of metal at least in some parts. It's made in Japan, and it feels solid in my small hands, not wobbly. Feels sturdy even with its small and compact/light size. The body itself has a matte color, but the lens cover is glossy, which attracts finger prints and it really doesn't look good. It makes me always wipe it with a cloth for the prints irritate my OC eyes.

fingerprint
See how it attracts fingerprints

Well, this can be helped by carrying a cotton cloth always to wipe all those prints if it bothers one much. I can live with that so I still find this cool gadget pretty.

Image Quality
Like I said earlier, Sony is already one established name when it comes to digital compact cameras that take great pictures. I will be showing some sample images here taken from my own DSC-TX5, by myself. I am not a pro when it comes to taking pictures, I'm just a regular photo taker. I was surprised though at some of the images I was able to produce with this small but terrible tool.

One of the features that the Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5 boasts is its ability to take clear pictures even in low-light, and this is the first one I tested because this is actually one of the reasons why I kept changing digital cameras over time.
10.2 megapixel Sony CyberShot DSC-TX5 camera
Beneath the tough exterior you’ll find some equally serious imaging features. With a resolution of 10.2 effective megapixels, the advanced Exmor R CMOS Sensor ensures detail-packed pictures, with superlative low-noise imaging performance in low light. It’s a perfect complement for the superb Carl Zeiss lens with 4x optical zoom and 25mm wide angle for perfectly framed shots - from intimate portraits to dramatic travel scenes.

Brief history of the digicams I owned:
I first owned a Canon Powershot A495 which was the first best digicam I owned, but its size is not too compact and it's not waterproof. The time I owned that one though, waterproof models are not yet out in the market. At the first sign of these all weather cameras, I got myself a Pentax Optio W10 and fell in love with it. It's a lot more compact and the best of all, it's waterproof. It also takes great pictures, but still not comparable with the image quality a Canon or Sony digital camera produces. And it sucks on low-light. However as time went by, the waterproof line of cameras are being a lot more competitive overtime and Canon & Sony started producing their own. But they're way more expensive than the others when they first came out so I got myself a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TS1 as replacement for my Pentax due to the reviews I've read in the internet, it being one of the most recommended waterproof cameras. When I owned one though, I was not happy because I found it too bulky for me, though I liked it's wide angled lens, which became a very welcome upgrade from my Pentax which can only take in a small portion of a scene in its frame. I was not happy with the image quality though. I found it too soft, and it still sucks in low light. The gadget, unfortunately didn't even last a year with me. I sold it after a few months.

I chose the Sony DSC TX5 over Canon Powershot D10 because of its compactness. I was going to go for the Canon, if it only didn't look like a submarine. It's waaay bulkier than the Sony, and it's even bulkier than the Panasonic and I didn't like that. Besides, it's more expensive compared to TX5. Though I'm sure it delivers the best image quality because I owned a Canon before and I attest to that but it's just too bulky for my liking. So Sony won over it because of its size, and price :D.

I was supposed to be talking about image quality here, right? Check these out:

wwjd with flash
One of the great features of the TX5 is being able to select from the touch screen the point of focus. Cool, right? I played with the selective focus feature of the TX5 and this is what I got. I made the camera focus on the little calendar. This is with flash.

priorities with flash
Now I made it focus on the pen holder, still with flash

wwjd without flash
without flash, focused on the calendar. The light is only coming from the window, though our window's big so it's actually quite bright. This is still taken with a natural lighting

priorities no flash
pen holder focused, natural day light

macro no flash daylight
Macro shot of the calendar

macro without flash
macro shot of my lip balm, with natural light, which is quite low because this is somewhere in my table in front of curtained windows. Indeed it still can take clear photos in low light, and this is just a macro shot.

DSC00031
Low light macro of my icky laptop stickers


I just tested the macro low light shots, because in my opinion, this is where most of the compact digital cameras struggle. I am always sure that digital photos always look great with a generous supply of lighting so I no longer tested this with outdoor shots, though I've placed one in my photo stream. If you want to see the rest of the test shots, you can check my Sony DSC-TX5 User Review set in Flickr.

My verdict: Great low-light photos! I'm one happy owner! :D :D :D

portrait
a portrait shot of mine holding my black Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5

It will take a lot of words and a long blog page for me to make a comprehensive review of this thing so I just covered the parts that made me choose this camera over its other competitors. I still believe the best would still depend on the preference of the user so it still varies from person to person. If I'm to be asked, I'm pretty satisfied upon purchase of this gadget, but I can't answer for someone else who might not like this because they have a different preference. I no longer did a review on the waterproof feature because I don't think there's much to see there. Much of the picture quality still depends on the amount of light the camera can take in and we all know this is greatly reduced if you go under water so I'm not expecting much on this anymore. As long as I'm able to take pictures under water, it's already a great plus. So a good photo quality would already be considered a bonus.

So would I recommend this camera? I think so, if you have have the same preference as mine :).

I would welcome other questions if you want my opinion on the other features of this camera. Feel free to post your comments and I would probably just make a new blog entry should I gather a few more inquiries about the other features.

Jan 21, 2011

Google Ads: So That is why you're not approving me

Posted by Goldi on Jan 21, 2011 at 1:52 PM 0 comments
I've been fussing about how it's taking a while for Google AdSense to review and approve my registration. I thought at first that they have ignored it. Turns out I was the one who ignored their notices. They have been sending me emails pala as to why my registration takes a while to get approved. Actually, they have denied my registration twice already.

First email, on December 24, 2010--the day I signed up for an AdSense account:
Thank you for your interest in Google AdSense. Unfortunately, after reviewing your application, we're unable to accept you into Google AdSense at this time.

We did not approve your application for the reasons listed below.
Issues:
- Page type
---------------------
Further detail:
Page type: Your website is a type of website that we do not currently accept into our program. Such websites include, but are not limited to, chat sites, sites that drive traffic through cybersquatting, and sites that use excessive keywords in the content or code of their pages.

Okay??? So it's my "page type". They did not specify as to what type of page they saw my blog is, but I'm sure it's not any of the page types they cited as any of the types they currently do not accept in their program. I mean, how could my site possibly be a cybersquatter? I am aware that my blog domain is quite common but I've purely thought of that and it just so happened that the address was available when I first signed it up so I saved it for myself. And how could I be cybersquatting when no other popular website registered the name for them? Just because I am an individual I am no longer entitled to have a very easy to remember domain name? It doesn't make sense. I googled "noted thoughts" while I was writing this part of my post and voila! I did find a site that registered the name noted thoughts for them, which is about media. However, I saw that they have it registered just last year. I had this domain since October 2008, that's when I first got it and here's the proof. So if there's anyone who'd be cybersquatting, I don't think that's me.

My site's not even a chat site, and I don't actively drive traffic. I just let them come. And I don't think I use excessive keywords in the content or code in my page even if it's no longer relevant in my posts. Like I said, not [HYPER]actively driving traffic.

I mentioned I didn't notice these emails so I actually just got to read them now. So before, I just re-registered the moment I noticed an abnormality. Then came the second email, January 20, 2011:

Thank you for your interest in Google AdSense. Unfortunately, after reviewing your application, we're unable to accept you into Google AdSense at this time.

We did not approve your application for the reasons listed below.

Issues:
- Unacceptable site content
---------------------
Further detail:
Unacceptable site content: Your website contains content that we do not
allow at this time. Please review our policies (https://www.google.com/adsense/policies?hl=en_US) for a complete list of site content not allowed on web pages.

So now they can't accept my site content? C'mon... I especially made this blog for "everyone's" eyes, and I mean EVERY ONE, ANY ONE. I am always very careful at making this suitable for all audience to the point that the entries can still be "child-friendly" and that's also the reason why I don't blog much, because I'm being very careful in publishing contents in this blog. So again, it doesn't make sense what would be unacceptable in any of my writings. There are other bloggers there who haven't written any single blog post without profanity and yet they have google ads flashing in their pages.

I wouldn't be making such a big deal out of this if not for the ridiculous reasons they've given me for not accepting my registration. It's okay if they don't want advertise in my page, but it's actually the fact that I think they're not being fair with me. But okay, if they really don't want to flash their ads here, what can I do? I wouldn't want to change my blog address just because of that, because I was the first to get this in the first place, right??? I could've been the owner of that business with the name Noted Thoughts for God's sake! So not fair.

I hope Nuffnang doesn't get me into this kind mess. So far, I see they're blogger friendly. Thank you.

Adsense in My Blog

Posted by Goldi on at 8:52 AM 0 comments
I don't have much time to regularly check what's happening in my blog, and I don't do this blogging thing on full time basis anyway. I am trying to monetize this hobby of mine but only as a sideline.

A few days ago, I blogged about how my Google AdSense application is still pending for approval. It's been really quite a while so I decided to check again what's happening, having also noticed that the sample ads were no longer showing in my blog. I was surprised to see that my application seem to have been reset. I have to do everything again like fill out the information they require and check the EULAs.

It's no biggie with me, but I can't deny that it was a hassle. Anyway, I just did everything again and so again I got this notice that I will need to wait a week for my application to be approved. Yeah right.

I know they are not the only option I can have to monetize my blog and so I just signed up for nuffnang today and placed them in my sidebar. I'm putting Google at the end of each of my posts.

Jan 19, 2011

Planning to Get the Sony Cybershot DSC-TX5

Posted by Goldi on Jan 19, 2011 at 1:35 PM 0 comments

I've been eyeing this camera since last quarter of last year 2010. I actually have it listed in my wish list. After several checking outs of online reviews, unboxing videos, and images of the actual product, I am finally decided to get this gadget. I'm thinking of getting the black color so it would not be too difficult for me to resell it in case I decide to upgrade or replace this in the future. Although I can't think of any reason right now yet of replacing this in the future, I have a history of not being able to keep any gadget in my hands for longer than 2 years because I am almost always tempted to get the updated version of what I own once something comes out. I'm just thinking ahead in case this happens, though my plan is actually to keep this gadget until it gives itself out on me. I want to know how long this could last.

I'm hoping to be able to write a review about this product once I get to lay my own hands on it.

 

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