Wednesday, November 28

Swabeng Random Thoughts Part 6

1. Its been two months since I last Swabeng Random Thoughts

2. Its been two months since I left my job to do other things and yet, I felt I'm still piled up as I need to get things done. If I could hire an assistant, I would but I don't have enough funds to do that. 

3. Though many advised to manage my time accordingly, if you have a baby that constantly needs your attention, she has to be first over everything else.

4. I still have 6 pending posts for 2011 and most of them has something to do with food. 

5. From almost 120 pending post, I somehow trimmed it down to 88. BUT with some drafts from my notebook (around 50-60), I guess I need to clear-up again. XD

6. My pending sets to edit for 2012 piles up to almost 200 with 50+ more for 2011. XD

7. I have to  download all old pictures from Multiply as their software isn't working on my PC. Thats 15,000+ shots from 2007 to 2010. 

8. I still have to find time to get back in shape. My sleeping pattern almost changes every 3-4 days. 

9. Probably, I'll enjoy the rest of the year without worries until the end of the world (NOT)! The world won't end on December 21st as some would claim. =P

Monday, November 26

The Week That Was (November 18 - 24)

Sunday: I was able to go online early before Migmig got up. I took her to llanas to do some shopping and at the same time, keep everyone free. By 12:00pm, I'm off to Plaza Lawton to attend my 3rd postal Heritage Walking Tour (I'll write a blog about this). By the time we reached the Calvo Building, I stayed there longer until my fellow walkers head off to MET. I decided to look for Masuki to satisfy my curiosity as I'm craving for mami, siopao and siomai. It took me probably an hour just to get there and when I finally found Masuki, I made sure to get myself full. and I got full as their servings of original mami, special siopao and 2 pieces of siomai got me really full as if I'm eating for two people XD. When I got home, I spent the rest of the evening with them. And I went online again until almost 3:00am XD.

Monday: Tried getting up early as I was able to go online and download some old photos from Multiply. By 11:00am, we head-off to The medical City for my baby's check-up and vaccine. We had to wait for an hour and a half which gave us time to go to Starbucks and have some coffee. Migmig didn't cried as much as she did last month as she slowly recognizes her doctor would do no harm to her. After her check-up, we head-off to Robinson's Galeria as my wife did some little shopping. Then we took an FX ride to SM Megamall to have our late lunch there. I took them to Masuki for my wife and baby to try the mami/siopao/siomai combination. Though it tastes good, I feel that the meat portions of the mami were not as generous as the time I tried it at their Binondo branch. We noticed that Migmig was so sleepy that after our lunch, we need a place to put her to sleep. Good thing Mondo Juice was pretty quiet and their couch is pretty spacious as well. After getting my juice, I stayed with my daughter while my wife went to cyberzone to look for some gadgets. I played some angry birds on my wife's tablet to keep me busy until she comes back and until our baby got up and awake. We got home at past 8:00pm tired but we still got enough energy to spend the rest of the night.

Tuesday: By 6:00am, I was able to get up and make sure to download as much pictures as I can before the deadline. I have around 10000 files to download manually so I hope I could do this. By the time Migmig got up again at past 2:00pm, we went down so she could have dinner. Then, I left for Gateway to buy some baby wipes for her and at the same time, have coffee at Starbucks to update my annual expenses for 2012. I spend probably an hour and a half before going back home and spend the rest of the night with them.

Wednesday: Got up at 6:30am to go online and download some of my old shots from Multiply. So far, I'm making progress as I was able to download 10-20 albums (from more than a hundred XD). The day was practically the same as I stayed home the entire afternoon and took care of Migmig. I bought her some "Bibingka" for dinner before her mom arrives and took her turn in taking care of our baby.

Thursday: Mornings was pretty much the same except that I need to download all pictures in Multiply before it's completely deleted. By 1:00pm, I left home and went to Greenhills to have lunch at Rack's. after lunch, I had some coffee at a crowded Starbucks Coffee as I update my day-to-day expenses for this year. By 5:30pm, I am already at Sir Jo's studio to attend the last Non-Print Day Lecture Series for the year with Pat Dy as the speaker (I'll write a blog about this). By the time the session was done, I took a cab going home and got home before midnight. My wife was still up and awake when I went to bed and get some sleep.

Friday: For some reason, Migmig was having a hard time sleeping because of her runny nose so my wife had to take care of it and lower the fan to #2. Good thing Migmig was able to go back to sleep. Unfortunately, I'm the one who is having a hard time sleeping for the inconvenience. Good thing, I feel sleepy again at 4:30am which gave me more hours of sleep until 9:30am. Then I went out to make a phone call about my check but they said its not yet ready. I felt a little bit sad but I have to wait.   By 3:30pm, we went down so she could have lunch. Then I went out to Mendiola to check-out a rally by various groups from the media in relation to the Maguindanao Massacre that happened 3 years ago (I'll write a blog about this). After the rally, I took a quick bite at Jollibee before going online at a nearby cafe for almost 3 hours. I had congee for dinner since there was no food available at home. And by 11:30pm, I went upstairs to go to bed only to find out that Migmig is still awake. XD. I had to turn on the aircon as its hot and humid in our room.

Saturday: I got up at almost 9:00am as I still feel the chills from the aircon last night. I was able to go online for a few minutes before taking Migmig our for a walk then for breakfast. By 10:00am, she was already asking for milk and I made sure she gets it as my mom arrives and pays us a visit. She didn't stay long as she needs to take care of the house. By 12:30pm, I took our baby upstairs so she could get her nap. I was about to go online when I noticed that our broadband stick was not there. To maximize productivity, I installed Adobe Photoshop CS5 on my wife's PC and give it a test. I also made some adjustments to make sure that it works well without any problems. I was able to go online eventually until 3:00pm as Migmig got up again. I took a quick bath before having lunch. I went online pretty quick before getting Migmig from her mom at 5:00pm. We went to Gateway to spend some Daddy-Baby time. We had some frap at Starbucks as it was pretty much crowded. By 8:00pm, we got back home to spend the rest of the night.

Tuesday, November 20

The Gerber Baby

For parents that feed their babies Gerber (we feed our baby too for a couple of months), her is some trivia for you. XD

Taken from Facebook.

Do you remember the original Gerber baby? The logo dates back to 1928. Look about her now! The The original Gerber baby, Ann Turner Cook, is turning 84 today. 

Happy Birthday Ann!!! 

The Week That Was (November 11 - 17)

Sunday: With no sleep, I went online at a nearby internet cafe until 2:30am. Then I waited for almost 30 minutes to get a cab to Annapolis to Sir Jo's Studio. By 3:30am, we head-off to Mc Donald's in Tagaytay to have breakfast and had a meeting before finally going to Taal. By 7:00am, were in Taal already. It was a fun-filled day indeed though going back home took us another 4 hours. When I got home, I went to my baby and carried her in my arms. I relaxed a bit before having a warm bath and finally going to bed early.

Monday: I got up at around 6:00am still feeling some body pain from yesterday's prison riot. I was able to go online for almost 3 hours before Migmig got up. I was able to give her breakfast consisting of biscuits and bread before her mom gave her a bath. When my baby fell asleep, I used the other laptop to update some information I had from our new one. By the time she go up again, I went out to go online for a few hours before going back home and spend the rest of the evening.

Tuesday: I was able to go online in the morning before my daughter got up. We spent a good amount of time downstairs before her mom gave her a bath. After my baby went to sleep, I got ready and off to SM Megamall to check on the jobfair there as well as get my sister-in-law's tablet which has been unusable for weeks. When I got to Megamall at 2:00pm, I went to Starbucks first to fill-up some information for the jobfair before going to the jobfair site. It's pretty much boring as most were call centers (as always). No booth interests me so I head off to Dad's to have some merienda since I'm starving already. By the time I'm done with merienda, I strolled around again before having my second coffee while editing my journal and preparing for the coming ahead. I went home at around 6:00pm and by the time I got home, I went online for another hour. Then I enjoy the rest of my night with my family before going to bed.

Wednesday: I got up early so I could go online and do some updates. Then when Migmig got up, I made sure that her needs were attended for the morning. By the time my baby slept, I went online again to update some of my stuff before she got up at almost 3:00pm. By 4:00pm, I'm off to Rockwell Powerplant Mall to watch the advance screening of Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2 at their Cinema 3. I had to stop by at Fully Booked to buy some magazines to add in my collection. When I got to Rockwell at 5:00pm, I strolled around making sure to familiarize myself with the mall. By 8:00pm, I was already inside the cinema with a popcorn on my hand as I try to enjoy the movie. By the time the movie ended, I head for home but instead of taking a cab, I took the normal route which saved me some money. When I got home, I was suppose to go to sleep early but for some reason, I slept at past 1:00am.

Thursday: For whatever reason, I got up at 5:00am and decide to turn on the laptop to go online. By the time Migmig got up, we head to Jollibee for breakfast. A few hours after breakfast, I felt uneasy as I'm having chest pains throughout the day. Both Migmig and I slept in the afternoon and she even got up earlier than me. We went down at 1:30pm as her aunt gave her some lunch. I tried to fight the pain and I just moved as slow as I can to alleviate the pain. We practically spend the afternoon home as she fell asleep at around 5:30pm. I went online in the afternoon to catch-up before my baby got awake again. By evening, I felt a little bit better now as I went to bed and get more rest.

Friday: Got up at past 7:00am after hitting the snooze button on my mobile several times. I went online until 8:00am as I took Migmig down then my mom came for a visit. I was able to feed my baby with breakfast as my mom stayed with us for a couple of minutes before she left for work.   By the time Migmig got up at almost 3:00pm, I went out to have lunch before going online again to work on some of my blogs. When I went back home at 6:00pm, the door was locked and I guess they're having their nap so I went back and update some more blogs before going home at 8:00pm. My wife got home a few minutes after and we were able to spend our time with Migmig for the rest of the night.

Saturday: Got up at around 6:00am to go online until my daughter gets up at almost 8:00am. Then we went down and out to have some breakfast at Jollibee. For the first time, she didn't spit some of her food out while eating. I was able to put my baby to sleep after she took her bath. By 1:30pm, my wife and I head-off to Sucat to attend a funeral. I took us an about an hour just to get there and at the same time, I learned another way to go to Sucat without spending much time. When we got to Sucat, we spent almost 2 hours there as my wife was catching-up with her friend whose father just passed away. We had some snacks at KFC before going home. Then I went online for more than an hour before heading back home to spend he rest of the evening with my family. I even borrowed my wife's tablet as I liked one of the games installed there, I didn't notice it was almost 2:00am. XD

Friday, November 16

Things I've Learned from my Photograhy Mentor: Basic Color Management and Guerilla Shooting

Last February 5 (2011) was our last day in his class. But instead of going to Sir Jo's class late in the afternoon, most of us are in a race who would arrive first at his studio as that day was also "The Race Day". The race day is a contest for his students that whoever comes first, shall have his picture printed on a canvass plus other goodies courtesy of Sir Jo's sponsors.

Unfortunately, I arrived second at 7:15am which the first person arrived four hours ahead of me XD. We simply exchanged stories as we both waited for sir Jo's studio to open. Then one by one, my fellow classmates came and wasn't surprised as we got earlier than them. By past 10:30am, Sir Jo has already arrived and started warming-up his printer to print our assignments. We had our lunch at the studio and took some more snapshots while waiting for the other to arrive.

Anyway, on our last module, Sir Jo discussed to us is Basic Color Management and Guerilla Shooting when Shooting. Color Management is pretty new to me as I am always contented with having my pictures posted on social media websites. But its actually better to have it printed and smell the photo paper once its printed. He also discussed to us the proper way on having you images print as close as what your eyes see. 

I guess I need to save up on a high-quality printer for me to print some of the images I really liked. Anyway, here are some of the things I've learned from Sir Jo. 

1. One of the worst things to do in Photoshop is to open Photoshop right away. Let your display warm-up first before opening Photoshop. 

2. Make sure that display profile is accurate and/or you should have an embedded software in order for Photoshop to display the actual image (color/brightness). 
3. If you will use your photos for the web, you may use sRGB. If you will have your photos printed, use Adobe RGB
4. Color workspace is like a box of crayons. 
5. Over-saturated images makes it more difficult to print. 
6. Calibrate and Profile your display at least once a month to make your images better. 
7. Rendering Intent is the method used on Gamut Mapping
8. The best shot is the safest shot. 
9. As you raise your camera in height and you point your lens down, your light source should be lower. 
10. Do not be afraid to experiment

If you fin some of the tips too foreign or too weird,
visit his website or better yet, enroll in his basic photography classes. 

At the end of the session, your photograph is useless unless you print it and share it with your loved ones and I couldn't agree more.  ^_^

Sir Jo Avila together with his Saturday Class

I'm looking forward to enroll in his Advance Class soon. ^_^

Things I've Learned from my Photograhy Mentor: Basic Photoshop

Last January 29 (2011), I was the second one to arrive at the studio but apparently I had no sleep due to my 6th night at work back then. Sir Jo told us not to bring our Camera as he will be discussing the basics of photoshop. While waiting for the others, I got to read again one of the previous issues of DPP (#4 or #5 I think).

This was one of my reasons why I decided to attend a basic photography class is to further enhance my know-how in editing an image as close to what my eyes can see. It is not enough for me to do auto-editing every time I edit my pictures. I wanted somehow to improve the way I edit pictures that I can consider worth posting and sharing it with others.

At the start of Sir Jo's class, I'm beginning to fall asleep but I had to keep myself awake as I may have missed some of the important topics he would discuss. With the help of probably more than 4 cups of coffee from his studio, somehow that kept me awake even for a couple of minutes.

He showed us first how to set-up photoshop to maximize its usage. I didn't know there was such a thing until I saw his step-by step procedure on how to optimize it. I'll probably do it one I got back home. 

Anyways, these are the things that I've learned from attending his fourth session on Basic Photoshop:

1. If you're doing color correction or retouching, you should view your image at 100% resolution.
2. Save your file as often as possible while working.
3. avoid using the "Auto Edit" mode. 
4. Global adjustment changes the image as a whole. 
5. Sharpening is the last thing to do before saving your image. 

Well, that's all I could share for now. You could visit Sir Jo's Webpage to learn more on Basic Post-Processing. XD

Last part on the works. XD

Thursday, November 15

Swabeng Movie Review: Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 2

Before doing my 2nd movie review in years, I'd like to thank Azrael for the invite yesterday even if its on a short notice and to Jamba Juice for making this advance screening event possible. 

Taken from Google

If you missed watching any of the Twilight series (I missed Eclipse and Breaking Dawn Part 1), It would be difficult for you to understand the last installment of the saga. Anyway, my opinion about the movie would be short and sweet. 

I like the cinematic opening of the movie showing the cast and crew behind the movie. The settings were pretty much laid back compared to other vampire movies I've watched recently. 

The story began as Bella enjoys her new life as a vampire along with its gifts. But with the birth of her daughter, Renesmee, the entire Cullen clan would be facing another threat. What I find it funny is that they are side by side with Jacob and his pack (of werewolves) as they face the Volturi in an epic battle that is for the ages.

With their daughter's life on the line, the Cullens would seek help from their allies to prove the Volturi wrong about a false allegation on Renesmee. Would their allies believe? Just watch the movie to find out XD. 

The battle scene was epic. Vampires and Werewolves unite against a foe that could change the course of their history. A lot of heads were pulled from their bodies as well as death to other werewolves but some of the important characters of the story have to die. Who died? Just watch the movie to find out XD.

With all the battle going on, the movie had a happy ending (Bummer!!!) which I wasn't expecting from a Vampire/Werewolves movie. How did that happened? Just watch the movie to find out XD. 

Overall, I wasn't that satisfied with the entire movie but hey, that's just me okay. XD

I was suppose to write this the minute I got home from the advance screening but my wife was using the laptop so I just wrote it just now. 

Wednesday, November 14

Prison Riot at Taal: Preview

Since we went to different locations on our stay in Taal last Sunday (November 11), I have to set my post into different parts XD. 

Actually, it was really a tiring day as some of us sacrificed a few hours of sleep just to be at Sir Jo's Studio at 3:00am. XD Fortunately, I was able to doze-off on our way to Tagaytay for some breakfast and for a final meeting going to Taal. 

As we move on from Tagaytay to Taal, our group was welcomed with a good view of the sunrise on our way but we didn't took photos of it as we had to be in the Basilica de San Martin de Tours by 7:00am. 

Once we got there, I was amazed on how people there were able to preserve their heritage. As most of the houses there were still the same in a way it has not been altered but rather preserved. 

We toured two churches, three museums, a balisong (pocket knife) store and witnessed a live horse racing on the streets. 

Our way home was more tiring as we had to go the other route via Star Tollway that took us around 4 hours but still I enjoyed that day of shooting and learning. 

Here are some pictures I took (unedited so please don't steal, God is watching). More soon on my succeeding posts per location. 

Basilica de San Martin de Tours

Basilica de San Martin de Tours Ceiling

One of the Old Houses in Taal.

Agoncillo Ancestral House

Pocket Knives

More to come soon. XD

Monday, November 12

The Week That Was (Nov 4 - 10)

Sunday: Migmig got up early when I was about to edit some pictures. Instead, we went out to visit Nanay before having breakfast at Jollibee. The entire day was pretty much the same for the past few days though. We basically spend the entire afternoon at home before I took my baby out to have a walk. Then my wife got home early from Divisoria and she wanted to hear mass so we attended the mass even if we got in late. After mass, we bought some native snacks before going home to spend the rest of the day. I went out again to go online before joining my wife and kid in bed.

Monday: Got up a little bit early as I was suppose to do edit some pictures. Unfortunately, Migmig got up early too so instead, we went out and visited Nanay and I bought some snacks at 7-11 for my baby to enjoy before going back home to spend the rest of the morning. After Migmig took her bath, I was able to go online before getting ready for my first interview this week but I had to put Migmig to sleep first. When I was getting dressed, my baby got up and cried all of a sudden as she was looking for me and my wife. I wanted to comfort her but I let my sister in law take care of it. I took an LRT ride to Cubao and had a stop over at Fully Booked for some magazines and books and Starbucks so I could have some frap and start collecting stickers for my 7th Starbucks Planner (I'll write a blog about this). After coffee, I took the bus going to Makati for my interview at Stefanini. I got there at 4:00pm and waited for my exam and interview and left at past 7:00pm. I had dinner at Chicboy and another round of coffee before going home vis the LRT 1-2 route. When I got home at 10:00pm, my baby was still up and awake so I joined her to bed as I feel tired as well.

Tuesday: Got up early though I wasn't able to go online as my mom paid us a visit and Migmig got up early as well. I had to leave home at 11:00am since I need to be at Mc Kinley at 1:00pm. I took the LRT2 ride stopping at Starbucks in Gateway before getting an MRT ride. When I got to the Magallanes station, I was looking for a shuttle going to Mc Kinley but I wasn't able to get one. With almost little time left, I took a cab and got to Cognizant at 1:00pm. Well another waiting game again as I had to wait for my turn before my interview. Good thing they have TV in the waiting area to keep us occupied. Then I was interviewed by one of the recruiting team asking for some details about my resume. After that, I have to wait again before another phone interview. After the second interview, I was told to come back at 6:00pm so at 4:00, I went out to have late lunch somewhere. I ended up having my late lunch at Sinangag Express and had another round of coffee at Starbucks before going back to Cognizant at 6:00pm. My final interview was with an Indian National and it was a pretty short interview. I asked some question regarding the position I'll be handling if ever I get hired. Then I had to wait again before I would know the result. When its my turn again, I found out that the last interview didn't went well hence I'm not hired. When the recruiter asked me if I'm interested in another position, I told her I'm only interested for the IT Helpdesk post. She checked my papers and found out that the other recruiter profiled me for the Technical Helpdesk post which is a TSR post in a call center. She apologized about it and she told me that I'll be receiving a call from India regarding for the position I applied. I left the building at 7:00pm as I head straight home. I got to take a new route going home as I board on a jeep to Guadalupe and a bus to SM Megamall. I had to go online to have some papers printed before finally reaching home.

Wednesday: Got up at past 7:00am and I went online for a couple of minutes before going down to get ready for my 3rd interview this week. I left home at 9:00am and took an FX ride to Ortigas as I have to drop off somewhere to look for that building. While looking, I found a Starbucks and decided to relax for a while as I'm still ahead of time. Then I was able to locate the building and head up to EnfraUSA. The place was pretty much deserted thinking that they only work at nights except for the HR and Recruiting team. What I liked about this company is that they would let you fill up some information using a computer instead of writing it down on a form. Their tests are pretty much easy as it only consists of English Comprehension and Typing Speed. After I'm done, the interview started. The interview was a combination of my resume and technical interview that at one point, my interviewer wanted to fully understand why I left E-Telecare in 2009. I told him my reason yet we lingered on that question for around 5-10 minutes. Eventually, the interview went fine as I was asked to be back at 1:30pm for another interview. I went to Podium to look for a good place to eat but with limited time, I went back to EnfraUSA and wait for my second interview. When my turn came, the series of questions were the same with the first. I guess they really wanted to validate my answers and at the end of the interview, the interviewer gave me a background on what their IT Helpdesk do (They are more concentrated on Active Directory Management, Virus Removal and PC Configuration for both Windows and Mac). By 2:30pm, I went back to The Podium to have my late lunch at Madeca which serves Mexican cuisine. The ones I got are really good and they really fill my tummy up. Then, I went to SM Megamall to spend some more time before finally going home. By night time, I went online for an hour before heading back to get that much needed rest. ^_^

Thursday: Got up a bit late at 7:30am as I don't have any scheduled interviews for today. I had breakfast and did my morning rituals before going up to go online for a couple of minutes. I took Migmig down for a walk at Nanay's store before spending the rest of my morning at home. Once my baby have slept, I went online for almost 2 hours before she got up again. While I'm online, my wife told me she wanted to go out after work so I made sure me and my baby are prepared and I looked for a good place to eat. We left home at 4:00pm and it was about to rain that time. Thank God it didn't on the first half of our trip. Rain began to fell when we got to Katipunan and with no umbrella, my baby got a little bit wet. My wife's boss was not around when we got there, probably the reason why my wife wanted us to go there. We spend some time at her office until 7:00pm. It was still raining outside when we went down and our plans have to be on the other side. Instead, we had dinner at Gateway's food court before finally going home. I had to go online again at 11:30pm as my wife asked me to check her cafeland by 12:30am. I did as well as check some of my stuff there before going to sleep at 1:00am.

Friday: Got up again at past 7:00am and did some morning rituals before going online. By 1:00pm, my daughter is fast asleep and I was able to to go online without any interruption for a couple more minutes. I got ready and went to SM Megamall to buy diapers for my baby and look for a quiet place to update my journal. When I got to SM Megamall, I went to Powerbooks just to look around until I saw this Journal that wanted me to buy it then and there. Probably, I will sometime before the year ends. Then I went to Dad's to have their merienda buffet and made sure I got my money well spent. Then I went to Starbucks hoping there would be available seats but to no avail. Instead, I bought my daughter some diapers before going home. From there, I went online for 2 more hours before finally going to bed.

Saturday: Got up at almost 7:00am as it took me a while to get up from bed. I went online to do some updates as well as read some more blogs as well. Suddenly, Migmig got up so I cut my online time till 8:00am. We went out to visit Nanay before having breakfast at Jollibee. She was able to eat as much as she could as we went back home and spend the rest of the morning there. I was able to take a bath after my baby did and then after putting her to sleep, I used my laptop to edit some pictures and make some updates. So far, I've edited 2 sets for 2011 which means I've got a few more to go. XD When my daughter got up, I tried to get some sleep but I was having a hard time getting to sleep until my wife wanted to take Migmig back up before she turn on the aircon. We spent the entire afternoon there as before we went down. I went out to do some things but it was cut short by my wife so I had to go back home to take care of my baby. We went out to visit Nanay as they are closing for the day. Then we went back home so I could put my baby to bed. Then I took a bath and got ready for tomorrow's Prison Riot in Taal as I left home a few minutes before midnight. 

Got my SSS ID (UMID) in less than 3 months.

If you still remember the horrible encounter I had with SSS in 2010, this year, it was completely the opposite. ^_^

This morning when I was about to spend some more mornings with my baby, the mailman handed to me two email (one for me, the other for my sister-in-law) and I sign some papers before taking a look. 

I saw both envelopes coming from SSS. It could be probably our SSS IDs. I remember applying for one sometime late last month and one of the guys told me that I have to wait at least 6 months to get my ID. Well, in less than 2 months I got my ID already. ^_^

[My SSS ID picture here soon XD]

Kudos to SSS and the people behind it for making my experience a better one. 

Thank God I already have one of the most important ID that I need. 

Friday, November 9

Swabeng Thoughts at Work: The difference of a Service Desk and an Help Desk

I find this topic pretty interesting even for a fact that I'm not a Helpdesk nor a Service Desk for the time being (I'm a bum =P)

I never even imagine there was a difference of being an IT Helpdesk and an IT Service Desk until I read this lengthy article, I'll try to include some that had impact and I'm sure that some of the tech bloggers who work in the IT industry can relate to this.

A Help Desk focuses on end user needs.

A Help Desk provides incident management to ensure customer’s problems are resolved in a timely fashion. A best practices Help Desk utilizes software to track the incidents making sure that no trouble gets lost. It manages a database that keeps track of the IT assets enabling access on a real time basis to information about software and configuration of the IT system. The Help Desk has the ability to create monthly and annual reports on the number of troubles, the time to respond to the trouble, the time to fix the trouble which could all feed into a Service Level Agreement (SLA). Some of the specific tasks a Help Desk performs include:

  • Computer or Software consultations
  • Change and Configuration Management
  • Problem escalation procedures
  • Problem resolution
  • Single point of contact (SPOC) for IT interruptions
  • Service Level Agreements
  • Tracking capabilities of all incoming problems

A Help Desk is tactically focused and is most concerned about end user functionality. One way of implementing a Help Desk is for the organization to meet minimum requirements to get an end user back in service once the incident is reported. However, a best practices Help Desk utilizes processes and software to minimize the service interruptions both proactively and reactively.

A Service Desk focuses on corporate strategy.

A Service Desk is a Single Point of Contact between users and IT Service Management. It manages information delivery by utilizing Information IT infrastructure Library (ITIL) v3 best practices to deliver these services both with software and defined processes. The Service Desk is the first contact in an organization for any and all IT questions. Best practices Service Desks are process focused and company strategy focused. The processes outlined in ITIL v3 are broken down into five ITIL Core Service Lifecycles.

  • Service Strategy –Evaluate current services and ensure a plan is in place to, modify and implement new and existing services when required.
  • Service Design – Evaluate and ensure a new service will meet current and future needs. Ensure a new service can be introduced into the live environment.
  • Service Transition – Define a plan that ensures no service outages or gaps during a service transition, thus the effects of the transition on the corporation are minimal.
  • Service Operation – Responsible for the ongoing monitoring of a service that is used to deliver services.
  • Continual Service Improvement – Review and analyze opportunities to improve all IT process and functions.

Many companies have a Help Desk without a Service Desk.

There are some instances where a corporation does not require or is not ready for the processes and service offerings of a Service Desk. In that instance a Help Desk will meet the tactical needs of the corporation. The Help Desk will give users a place to contact when they are having specific IT issues. Thus, the amount of time an end user is out of service will be minimized by the Help Desk.

Very few companies have a Service Desk without a Help Desk.

The Service Desk is concerned with the overall IT process and the individual components that function and interact with each other on both a software and process level. One area that is a must in any IT service offering is the ability to manage specific end user problems and issues. Thus, a Service Desk either has to have Help Desk functionality embedded in their Service Desk infrastructure or has the ability to link into a Help Desk offering for the end user. The Service Desk is focused on corporate strategy and ensuring all the IT functions are currently working and will work in the future, they must also have the ability to ensure all end users up and functioning.

A Help Desk is technically focused

As described in one of the previous posts, the Help Desk fixes problems that are taking place at that instant. Any time one of your employees is experiencing problems utilizing your Information Technology (IT) infrastructure the Help Desk is contacted to fix the problem and get your employee(s) operational as quickly as possible. For this immediate response to end user IT needs, the Help Desk must have employees technically trained in the appropriate technologies. The ultimate goal of the Help Desk is to offer first contact resolution as often and as quickly as possible.

A Service Desk is customer and process focused

As described in a previous post, the Service Desk is offers a Single Point of Contact (SPOC) and is focused on managing processes. The Service Desk is outward focused on the customer and inward focused on the day to day processes of the business. The ultimate goal of the Service Desk is to reduce costs by having the appropriate personnel working on problems, by monitoring trends and by managing processes.

Actually, its the company that decides on whether to get the services of a Helpdesk or a Service Desk or probably both. 

If you want to read the full article, just go to this link

Your November Covergirls for 2012

Well, I wasn't able to post the covergirls last month (Bad marky XD) since I was still on adjustment period from working to being unemployed. Well anyway, here are the lovely covergirls for November. 

1. FHM Philippines (Ritz Azul): I don't really know her well except that she's a kapatid (TV5 talent). Good thing FHM keeps on searching for new faces and not recycling on old ones. 

FHM Philippines November 2012

2. Esquire Philippines (Andi Eigenmann): Damn!!! I thought she won't be featured on any men's/lifestyle magazine. I was hoping she would pose for FHM but posing for Esquire wasn't that bad. And I'm still enjoying reading some articles while looking at her shots. She didn't look like she just gave birth. =P

Esquire Philippines November 2012

3. Rogue (Pauline Prieto): As a lover of the arts, this Art Issue is all I need to open up my creativity more. I've been to a few museums where taking pictures of the artist's works is okay, I know somehow, I do belong with them but the question is when will I join. XD

Rogue November 2012

4. Playboy Philippines (Sky Aisuru): The second Playboy Playmate of the year (2011) finally has her own cover. Though I have yet to meet her in person, from looking at her pictures, I think she is really fun to be with. 

Playboy Philippines November 2012

As of this writing, I have yet to see UNO's latest cover after their rebirth. But anyway, do grab a copy while its hot! XD

Thursday, November 8

Going for planner #7

As of late, some haters would probably post their thoughts and sentiments on why waste money on coffee just to get a planner. Who cares about these haters seriously? XD

If you ask me, there are only two things. Either they have a planner better than the ones launched at coffee shops (only a few would belong here). Or they don't have money to buy coffee to collect stickers for a planner (most would fall under here XD). 

Before you place your harshest comments, let me tel you this. I only visit these coffee shops if and only if I need a place to dump (XD) or if someone treats me coffee. Well another is that I visit them during sticker collecting season to get their planner. 

[Photo to be inserted here XD]

At the end of the day, I don't care what people say about these kinds of planners. I only have a few more stickers to go before I could get my 7th Starbucks Planner (out of 10 since its launch in 2004). I hope I could write something about it soon. XD

Swabeng Event: The book launch of Pogi Points

Do you think you are "Swabeh" enough to get the woman of your dreams with all the pogi points you already learned and gained through experience? Just when you think you’ve read and done it all, a book like Pogi Points comes your way to burst your bubble. Soldiers of love, beware.


Stanley Chi, the genius behind the bestselling Suplado Tips series (read: over PhP 2M worth of books sold in just one year) goes out of his comfort zone to write a “not-so-gentleman’s guide to looking good”, as the cover of his newest book, Pogi Points, announces brazenly.

Chi is out to prove he’s not a one-hit wonder after his first humor book, Suplado Tips, underwent reprinting five times in a year. The follow-up Suplado Tips 2 fared just as well, if not better, establishing Chi’s reputation as a legit writer who can sell books to people who don’t normally love reading.

Pogi Points is a collection of tips on how to get ahead in love through strategic behavior. It teaches the naive boy how to act around his object of admiration (or obsession, whichever applies).

“Ang pagiging gwapo, inborn; ang pagiging pogi, napag-aaralan (Being handsome is inborn; being pogi is something you can learn),” Chi explains. Using humor to make his point, Chi teaches precious bits of courtship wisdom to guys who want to win over the girl of their dreams.

Readers aren’t the only ones who noticed Chi’s flair for writing. The Manila International Book Fair, the biggest book fair in the Philippines already in its 33rd year last September, made sure Chi was on board as one of their first-ever endorsers, dubbed “MIBF Bookworms”. During the book fair, Chi joined social activist Carlos Celdran and fellow comedian-authors Ramon Bautista and Tado Jimenez in an online video campaign to promote literacy.

One Pogi Points pointer says, “Kung dinaan mo sa personality ang isang babae, para mo naring sinabi na pangit ka (If you use your personality to win over a girl, it’s like saying you’re too ugly [to do it any other way])!” Aside from tips on how to score more pogi points, the book contains photo comic strips, serious relationship facts, fun pogi trivia, and self-help lists. It’s a workbook of sorts for the love-struck guy who wants to have fun while decoding the woman he fancies.

Readers get a good dose of laughter from Pogi Points – and who knows? Maybe the single guys might even get a girlfriend. Though I'm happily married already, I would still get this book and enjoy reading it. 

And on December 1, join us as Pogi Points Book Launch will be at the National Bookstore, Edsa Shangri-La Mall. Don't get left behind. Be Pogi! 

Wednesday, November 7

Swabeng Tips For 50mm Lens Users

As the day comes to a close, I got to read an interesting article from The Phoblographer about using the 50mm lens. Regardless of brand, a 50mm lens is one of the lightest lens to carry and this is also one of the most versatile lens to use. 

The Nifty-Fifty

Anyways, here are some Swabeng Tips from The Phoblographer 

1. Zoom with your feet: As Sir Jo has mentioned in his lectures a few years back, using lens like these require movement to fill the frame of your intended subject. This would also help aspiring photographers to compose their shots by either moving forward, backward or sideways. 

2. Manual Focusing at its finest: Some 50mm lens can have problems auto-focusing, hence making photographers focus on their subject manually. Though I have yet to encounter any focusing problem on my ninfty-fifty, I may give manual focusing a try. 

3. Setting Aperture to f/4: They say most 50mm lens reach optimal sharpness at f/4. Setting your lens at f/1.8 or even f/1.4 will not allow users to get as much focus as needed. The wider the opening, the more chance of making a shot that may go out of focus on some areas. This would hold true on portraits as I observed in my shooting Marien, some parts of her face gets blurry though her eyes remain sharp (that's where I set my focus point at). 

4. Take a closer look where it focus: When shooting at wider open F stops like f/1.8 or f/2, it is very possible for the photographer to think that they are getting everything that they want in focus. Again, when I take pictures of my baby at f/2, I make sure to check if other parts of the picture are properly focused. Adjusting your lens to f/4 to f/8 may help especially if the area is well-lit. 

5. Remove your UV Filter: I'm not sure whether I agree or not. But I'd say I'd rather have my nifty-fifty protected than not. I'd advise aspiring photographers to invest in a high-quality UV Filter to ensure that their shots are still good. 

These tips may be quick, though unfortunately, some do forget them. =P

Do you have any other tips to share for 50mm users? Let me know. 

The week that was (October 28 - November 3)

Sunday: By 2:00pm, we head off to SM Megamall to pick-up my sister-in-law's tablet. When we got there, we had to get something to eat so we tried Eat and Go. Their food is pretty affordable and servings are quite good. When we got back to ASUS, unfortunately, the tablet needs motherboard replacement meaning reformatting it didn't work either. To console ourselves, we had coffee at Starbucks before heading home and spend the rest of the night.

Monday: At 7:00am, I got to go online to check some of my stuff and do some blog-hopping as well.I was able to do some until my daughter got up at around 9:00am. I made sure my baby got more than enough exercise before she takes her bath and spend some more time upstairs. I didn't put her to sleep right away but somehow, she slept all my herself making me free to go online XD. After Migmig got up in the afternoon, we went down so she could have lunch as I went out to go online for a few more hours. I got back at past 5:00pm so I could take of Migmig until my wife arrives.

By 7:00am, I'm already up and awake as I went online again.  When Migmig got up from her nap, I took her down for lunch then I followed a few minutes later. Since my sister-in-law would be out in the afternoon, I took Migmig out to SM Manila to spend the afternoon there. We head off to the national bookstore to look for some books. It seems that she likes books and she already knows how to put them back in their respective shelves. Then we had merienda at Bonchon to kill some more time. I let her try some chicken wings and she liked it. After our snack, I went online for a couple of minutes before going back to the national bookstore to buy the two sidetrip issues that I fancy. I hope this would start my desire to visit places in the Philippines XD. Good thing I was able to catch the bus home as Migmig was already sleepy. She took a quick nap on my shoulders and got awake when we got home. The night was pretty much fine as I enjoyed it with my family. 

Wednesday: Got up a little bit late at 7:30am as I did my morning rituals before going online. When my baby got up, I let her play downstairs for a couple of minutes. Nanay was the one who give Migmig a bath since my wife was needed at work early. I was able to put her to sleep early again which made me free. When she got up, I took her down so I could try to fix our ceiling. Unfortunately, it was already brittle so I had to remove some parts to prevent the entire ceiling from falling down. By 5:00pm, Migmig fell asleep again and this time, I joined her. By the time we got up, we spend the rest of the day enjoying her childhood. 

Thursday: I had a hard time getting up early even if I had set my alarm to 5:30am. Eventually, I got up an hour later (6:30am). I didn't waste any time in getting ready to visit my departed relatives back home in Batangas. I leave home at 7:00am and head straight to the south. I got to Malvar Cemetery at at past 10:30am and started to look for their respective tombs. I was able to visit them within an hour before going to my mom's old house for lunch. I was able to go online there though the internet connection was slow. Then I went to my dad's place in Bugtong and fortunately he's there. I got to spend some time with him before going back to Manila. When I got to Manila, I felt famished so I stopped by and look for burgers until I ended up at Mc Donald's. When I got home, I took a breather before going online again until midnight. XD

Friday: For the second straight day, I had to get up early as I have to go home this time to San Pedro to unload some of my magazines collected here and get the rest of my clothes to be used for the next couple of months. I just put my walking shorts on then I'm ready. By 8:00am, I'm back home and started my things to do. Good thing my mom had some cooked meal when I got there that helped me save some money. When they have left to visit our departed relatives, I was able to finish sorting stuff and packing some clothes to take back home. When I got back home, Migmig was just about to got to sleep so I joined her until she went to sleep. I went online for an hour or two probably to keep myself updated. The afternoon and evening went just the same as I went out to go online till past midnight before going home and get some rest

Saturday: And for the third straight day, I got up early at 6:00am to go online. This time, I had nowhere to go but stay here at home and get some enough rest. I should get some sleep early instead of sleeping at past midnight for me not to get sluggish at noon. I woke my wife early as she needs to go to Divisoria to purchase some stuff leaving the baby sitting chores to me for the entire morning. When Migmig got up, I let her play for a few minutes before we went down to have her walk and play more. Nanay was the one ho gave our baby a bath before we went back up and spend some quality ti
me. My wife got back home a few minutes past noon. I had to put my baby to sleep so I could go online uninterrupted for atleast 2 hours. Then my wife and her folks decided to go to Robinson's Magnolia so we dressed-up and went there after my baby got up. We spend a few hours there as Migmig love to ride the escalator. We had our early dinner at Kenny Roger's as my wife was worried about my baby getting hungry. We ordered their combo meals to get the most out of it before we continue strolling around the mall. When we got home, I went out to go online until midnight and when I got home, I continue to be online until 2:00am the next day.

Tuesday, November 6

Three Pinoys (Filipinos) included in Scott Kelby's World Wide Photowalk Top Winners

Last year, a Filipino won the Grand Prize for Scott Kelby's Worldwide Photowalk 2011. This year, three Filipinos were included in the top 11 list of the event for the year held a month ago in different parts of the world (my entry was not included unfortunately XD).

Anyways, here is Mr Kelby's log about this years World Wide Photowalk

Picking just 10 finalists and one grand prize winner from more than 1,100 images is a tougher job than it sounds. Remember, each of the shots that I’m looking at have already been chosen as the “best shot” from each local walk around the world (that pick is made by each walk local walk leader). So, all I’m looking at is good shot after good shot — the cream of the crop — so at the end of the day what it really comes down to is which ones are my favorites — which ones would I hang on my own walls.

What makes it even tougher is that the scenes and subjects taken by walk photographers are so varied — there’s everything from landscapes to seascapes, cityscapes to children, architecture to still life and about everything in-between. But I’m not complaining — it’s really been fascinating and fun looking through so many amazing images from every corner of the globe. It’s a job I take seriously, but at the same time, it really is a treat.

I was up all night and at it again yesterday morning just narrowing the field down again and again and again. I finally got it down to 84 images I really, really liked but then I had to go over those again and again until I could finally get down to just these 11 images. Whew!!!!

OK, I won’t keep you waiting any longer; let’s get to the winners and we’ll talk in a few moments.

Here are the 10 finalists (in no particular order):

By Klienne Eco (Binmaley, Ilocos Philippines Photo Walk)

This shot caught my attention right away — not just because of the fantastic colors and the bright burst of yellow setting sun — it’s the story that this image just hints of. It has a real cinematic look, almost like you’re looking at a set from the movie “Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome” and just want to know where this is, what that bus is all about (if it’s a bus at all), and was this taken after the “gas wars.” Very compelling. Note: To really appreciate this image, you have to click on it and see the larger version.

By Pranab Banerjee (Logan, Utah USA Photo Walk)

This has such an illustrated look, and I love that. The colors are wonderful, especially against that black background, but I think the thing that puts this image over the top is the post processing. Really nicely done. Not too much — it’s just right.

By Eds Euqui (Doha Ad Dawhah, Qatar Photo Walk)

I love the juxtaposition of old and new and it first look I figured it was Hong Kong, but then I didn’t recognize the buildings and the more I looked at it, the more I liked it (look at the buildings on the far right of the frame, you get a hint that it’s not in Asia). Great colors and composition, too!

By Mohammadmehdi Azarnoush (Isfahan, Esfahan, Iran Photo Walk)

What a wonderful, overhead view of a market. I love the colors, the post processing, the angle, and it just makes we want to be down there shopping myself. Very well done and clever framing as well. Nicely done.

By Allilie Carcasona (Butuan City, Caraga, Phillipines Photo Walk)

I love long exposure shots; make ‘em black and white and I love ‘em even more, and the starkness and simplicity of this shot really stood out to me. It’s moody, great composition and use of leading lines and just a very well put-together shot.

By Ken Bair (Elkhart, Indiana USA Photo Walk)

I klove how this froze a moment in time that seems so matter-of-fact at first glance, but there’s a lot more going on here that you see at first glance. First, look at the colors (or lack there of). The white walls, the bright bare florescent lights the white floor, and most everything else is black. It’s almost a monochrome shot but for these little things of color — the blue cover-up  the washed out image on the TV; the barber’s jeans, the wooden stool. It all makes for an interesting shot in the midst of something very ordinary. I dig it.

By Ben Freer (Winchester, United Kingdom Photo Walk)

I kept coming back to this image. The shallow depth of field is wonderful and the expressions on the people’s faces on the left versus the right is just very compelling. I really want to know what’s going on here, and I love the atmosphere and snow (rain?) that has pulled them all together under this archway. It’s simple, yet powerful. Very nice.

By Everts Aliredjo (Paramaribo, Par’bo Suriname Photo Walk)

What a wonderful portrait — just a straight up great face, great expression, great composition and appropriate post processing. The whole image just works and makes you feel you know a little about the subject, whose eyes have a real peace about them and kindness. Nice job!

By Mhellan Narciso (Kawit, Calabarzon, Phillipines Photo Walk)

There is a joy to this image that makes you smile right away, but once you get past the wonderful smiles of the children, you realize, this is a really well-composed shot with great color, energy, and post processing. I also love the way the pole cut diagonally right across the image. Very clever composition .

By Johan Conradson (Oslo, Oslo Norway Photo Walk)

Two things really make this image for me: The movement (courtesy of the slow shutter speed) and the way the colors work so beautifully together. I love the way the bottom of the photo just kind of blurs into nothingness — is she on the street, in a mall, on concrete, in a snow drift — it begs more questions than it answers and I love it.


By Lars Anshelm (Lunde, Skane Lan Sverige [Sweden] Photo Walk)

This is my all-around favorite, and Grand Prize winner, because I simply fell in love with it. I could point to how the texture, color. lighting and composition are just absolutely spot on, but what I love is that I want to know more about this image. I want to see what’s behind that door, and what’s in the backpack on the ground, and who the woman is (she’s a total mystery obscured by the umbrella) and what she’d doing there in the first place. The shot is moody and interesting, and I love the way the backpack on her shoulder stands out among all the muted colors. I could make a great case for any of these finalists to have been the Grand Prize Winner, but for some reason I just kept coming back to this one. Also, the post-processing is just right. I love, love, love this shot and wish I had taken it. My congratulations to Lars for capturing this gem.

Swabeng Thoughts: I'll be a bit bias here but the shots of my fellow Filipinos (anyone of them) deserve to win the top prize rather than the current grand winner. The entries from Doha and Iran looks far better as well. But hey, I'm not Scott Kelby and that just my opinion as a Pinoy shooter. Anyway, until next year. :D


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