2009: February

Early 2009 Eclipses in Stellarium

6:45 pm PHT

There were two eclipses that were visible from the Philippines in the last four weeks. The first was a partial solar eclipse that occurred in the late afternoon of January 26 and the second was a penumbral lunar eclipse on the night of February 9. I wasn’t able to view these two eclipses since for the solar eclipse, I couldn’t go out of the office the view of the sun from my office’s windows is blocked by skyscrapers and for the lunar eclipse, I forgot all about it. Besides, since the lunar eclipse was penumbral, it wouldn’t be as spectacular as a partial or even a total lunar eclipse.

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Silly MMDA

12:15 am PHT

Yes, a lot of people think MMDA and its chairman Bayani Fernando are already being silly (for example, read the misplaced pink fences that I blogged about in 2006). However, the photo to the right demonstrates what I personally think is MMDA taking its silliness to a whole new level—a silliness that is downright wrong and can be equated to producing educational textbooks riddled with errors.

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Blogging Ethics: A Round Table

12:11 am PHT

I attended a blogger round table organized by the Blog and Soul Movement last February 7 at the Asian Institute of Management in Makati. (Thanks, Juned, for the invitation!) The topic discussed was about blogging ethics, which has been a perennial hot topic since 2007 (and will likely still be in the years to come). The latest really big incident was the blogging storm surrounding the Valley Golf Club brawl that had some people accusing bloggers of being irresponsible.

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YOURS, an OpenStreetMap Routing Service

7:42 pm PHT

One of the cool things about OpenStreetMap (OSM) is that the data is immediately usable by anyone for any purpose. (See my OpenStreetMap category for other posts about OSM.) An end user can have access to the (massive) raw data and in fact, people have been building tons of applications using it. One of these applications that I’d like to show you is the whimsically-named Yet Another OpenStreetMap Routing Service or YOURS. Check out and play around with the simple-but-cool demonstration website. This demo site is a web application that displays optimal routes between two points you select and was launched last year.

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The 3rd Form Function & Class Mini Web Design Conference

11:48 pm PHT

I posted before that I went to the first Form Function & Class mini-conference last October 30. This was organized by the fledging Philippine Web Designers Organization and they have a whole series of such mini-conferences. I wasn’t able to attend the November mini-conference and so I resolved to attend the January 22 event and to muster enough courage to actually give a talk (and I indicated so at the sign-up sheet, though I had no topic at hand then). Unfortunately, one week before the mini-conference, I still had no topic. After wracking my brain, I settled on giving an introduction to Textpattern, the content management system (CMS) that I’ve used on Vista Pinas and Blogenyo.

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Creating Traffic Lights from C2 Bottle Caps

3:16 pm PHT

I often buy C2 bottled iced tea for lunch and I had the brilliant idea to make traffic lights out of the bottle caps of the apple, lemon, and green tea variants. Using some extra cardboard I had lying around in the office, copious amounts of glue, a sheet of white scratch paper, and a felt-tip black marker, I created this cute model traffic lights. It has certainly become a minor hit in the office with my colleagues that have seen it.

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