Archive for September, 2011

September 25, 2011

Hudud – For Muslims Only! Unless…

The curent uproar on the hudud issue must not distract the politics in Malaysia.

MCA wants to pull out of BN if Umno wants to implement hudud.

DAP wants to pull out of Pakatan Rakyat if PAS insist on implementing hudud as the Islamic state is not part of their present agenda.

The Christian community has come out saying that as long as it affects only the Muslim community with a guarantee that non-muslims constitutional rights are protected that hudud law implementation is not really a problem.

Seen another way, if the Muslim community wants to implement hudud as part of their religious practice that it is their constitutional right. Just make sure others are not affected in any which way, even unforeseen situations.

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September 15, 2011

Samsung Galaxy S II: Marvellous Fighting Peer to iPhone4

The Samsung Galaxy S II is certainly the hottest device in town right now. Go to any outlet anywhere and it’s moving very fast. Evidently, the Malaysian market has gotten more advance in using such devices and know a great device when they see one.

Anyway, enough said that this baby competes extremely well head on against the Apple iPhone 4. From what is publicly suspected, Apple delayed their launch of new models in June because of this Samsung Galaxy S II and other dual-core devices.

Here are a few ways to make your Galaxy S II more exciting.

The Launcher Pro standard screen with a row of 15 icons for the dock

1.  Launcher Pro

Samsung provides a Home Screen replacement for the Gingerbread standard called TwLauncher. It is a very decent app, clean and stable and improves a little over the standard Home Screen.

However, if you check out the Launcher Pro, you will immediately find significant improvements over the TwLauncher. It comes with widgets, animated screen changes, fancy cube app launcher screen, a scrollable 15 app dock are amongst the nice eye candies with the Launcher Pro.

The cube animation for scrolling the Home Screens

These make the Galaxy S II a really neat piece of work. You can switch between LauncherPro and TwLauncher easily by pressing the Home button and selecting which Home Screen App you want. Alternatively, download Home Switcher from the Market. It will bring up a selection of Home Screens for your selection.

The cube animation for App launcher

2.  Ultimate Faves Pro

This complements Launcher Pro very nicely. The folders in Launcher Pro are not exciting at all. It is standard Windows folder view. Boring ho hum!

Now with Ultimate Faves Pro, we have an animated carousel of apps you can group and display to launch instead of the boring folders. It is really cool to pop up this app and scroll round at the middle of the screen. You can set up multiple carousels to group the apps and scroll up and down the carousels by a up and down swipe on the screen. Really neat!

It also comes with some standard carousels for immediate use like System Controls, Recent Tasks, Running Tasks as well as Running Processes. I find System Controls and Running Processes quite useful.

Exciting Ultimate Faves Pro Carousel of apps

3.  Screenshot

If you don’t know by now, it is impossible to install a screenshot app in an Android device unless you have the device “rooted“. This is similar to the iPhone “jailbreak“. If you root your Galaxy S II, your warranty will be voided.

Now, the best kept secret is that Samsung has built this in for the Galaxy S II. Once you are ready to do a screenshot, press the Home Button and Power Button simultaneously. I find that if I press the Home Button and very quickly press the Power Button and hold them for a second, the device will return a message stating that the screenshot is taken. That picture will be kept in a folder called ScreenCapture.

All the screenshots shown here are taken using the standard Samsung Galaxy S II function.

4.  Vibration Notifier

By now you will have realised that the Galaxy S II does not have any LED lights to notify any events when the screen is off. There is a method to use the Menu and Return key white backlight to light up for notification but that will require the device to be rooted and the kernel modified. What this means is that you don’t want to do it!

Go to the Android Market and download Vibration Notifier which will allow you to have vibration and/or beep notification even when the screen is off. However, you must not have the phone in SILENT mode else nothing will happen. SILENT means no beep and no vibration. The device must be audible or vibration set on. For notification of missed calls or SMS received, you can configure Vibration Notifier to notify once every minute for X number of times. The length of the vibration can also be set.

At least now there is a way to be notified of events when the screen is off and locked.

5.  Extended Controls

Apart from the controls that are standard in the pull down screen, this neat app called Extended Controls from the Market allows you to place a bunch of system controls on the Home Screen.

Now, you can have turn on your LED flash as your torchlight, lock your screen, turn on vibration, silent mode, rotate screen, flight mode control, etc. all customizable on your home screen.

I have managed to set up to 7 controls per panel of 1×4 on the Home Screen and multiple panels too.

6.  Advanced Task Killer

One of the biggest silent battery drainer is a bunch of processes that keep appearing in the memory even when you don’t want them to be there. Unknowing to you, many apps that  you happen to install but not actively using are active in memory and possibly use your data network too. It is important to kill these processes but there are those that are persistent who can wake itself up again after being killed.

Here comes the Advanced Task Killer who will wake up every now and then and kill off those apps you choose for it to kill so that they no longer drain your battery or use your network charges unknowingly. This app is available from the Market and there are a few good ones to choose from.

With these apps, your Galaxy S II can be even more fun. Of course there are more like Juice Defender Pro. I have my set of favorites but suffice to share with you this set of fine apps that you must consider to spruce your Galaxy S II.

Is there any downside to installing these apps? No! And will it will give you many good moments to show that you have a better device than an Apple iPhone 4.

Of course, leadership is not static. Apple won’t take this down lightly and by the end of September, Apple is likely to announce the iPhone5 or the likes using dual-core too.

Meanwhile, the weight of the Galaxy S II is fantastic and it is definitely THE leader in its class of Android devices, if not ahead of the iPhone4.

September 12, 2011

History Unbelievable – What is Malaysia Becoming?

It all started a week before Merdeka Day. Mat Sabu made a speech and happened to mention that Mat Indera, who apparently led an attack on the Bukit Kepong police station, was to be considered an independence fighter. That happened in 1950 before Merdeka.

Utusan Malaysia started a barrage of attacks on Mat Sabu accusing him of being sympathetic to the Malayan Communist Party (MCP). This put PAS on the defense and they retorted with a clear stand that since the event was pre-independence time that anyone fighting the British for the country’s independence can be called an independence fighter.

Then all logic went out the window. Zainal Kling of UPSI made the controversial comment that it was untrue that Malaya had been colonized by the British, who only gave us their “protection”. He also claimed that only Singapore, Malacca and Penang were British colonies.

Then Higher Education Minister Khaled Nordin said the history syllabus for schools will be revised following “new findings” on the nation’s past. This was implying that our history needs to be rewritten to declare Malaya as a British protectorate rather than a British colony.

Today Tun M and a few days ago DPM Muhyiddin came out in support of such warped view. They had accused others of rewriting history when in reality they came out with the distortion.

Can all these VIPs and politicians publicly deny history and accuse us of misunderstanding history?

Here are some pertinent questions these public figures must answer.

1.  Why did we negotiate for independence from the British if we were not a British colony?

2.  Why were we part of HM Commonwealth?

3.  Why did we have British Commissioners, Governors and other British government officers of the crown?

4.  Who did Tunku, Onn Jaffar and other Umno founders work for if not the government of the day which was Britain?

5.  Who granted us independence in 1957 if not Britain?

6.  Did the MCP not fight for the freedom of Malaya with the British during the Japanese occupation?

7.  Did the MCP not march in the 1946 victory parade in London? The

8.  Did Umno not support the establishment of political and economic ties with communist China who supported the MCP? Even DPM Muhyiddin hosted a top official from China recently, the very country who financed and encouraged the MCP.

9.  Did we not have a “look east” policy towards Japan for economic progress, the same country that forcefully occupied our country and is responsible for the brutal deaths of hundreds of thousand of our countrymen but instead view the MCP with more disdain?

10.  Did our government not sign a peace treaty with the MCP? Then why is Umno and Utusan Malaysia so agitated about Mat Sabu’s comments?

When the country concocts imaginative changes to our history and our government is distracted from real economic challenges they were entrusted to build for us and our children, we are truly in trouble.

In a world of economic and financial turmoil, our government is bent on rewriting our history to reflect that it was all Umno who brought us independence. From what?