Entries for September, 2006

The *funniest* (I'm not kidding you) article I've ever read: "Japanese Women Catch the 'Korean Wave'.

Let me give you some AWESOME choice snippets:

"She may just have to take a number and get in line. In recent years, the wild success of male celebrities from South Korea -- sensitive men but totally ripped -- has redefined what Asian women want, from Bangkok to Beijing, from Taipei to Tokyo."

"Even in Shinjuku ni-chome, Tokyo's biggest gay district, niche bars with names such as Seoul Man have sprouted like sprigs of ginseng in a Pusan autumn."

"'South Koreans are so sweet and romantic -- not at all like Japanese guys, who never say "I love you,"' Yoshimura said as she waited for her blind date, a single Korean man, in the 50th-floor bar of a chic Tokyo skyscraper."

"Entertainment industry leaders in Seoul credit the phenomenon to good marketing coupled with an uncanny response throughout Asia to the expressive nature of the South Koreans -- long dubbed the Italians of Asia. A hearty diet and two years of forced military duty, industry leaders and fans insist, have also made young South Korean men among the buffest in Asia. Most important, however, has been the South Korean entertainment industry's perfection of the strong, silent type on screen -- typically rich, kind men with coincidentally striking looks and a tendency to shower women with unconditional love."

One can only hope that this "Korean Kraze" phenomenon starts applying to American-Koreans (Koreans living in America, not children of mixed marriages) now. I would just like to take this moment to tell all the single ladies out there that:

Me, single. Me, Korean. You, me, date. Buy into the hype today!

Currently listening to: Tupac Shakur - I Ain't Mad At Cha (video)
Posted by roy on September 1, 2006 at 02:39 AM in Foolishness | 7 Comments

It's amazing how popular Steve Irwin (Crocodile Hunter) was - since the announcement of his death on the wires, I've already seen multiple websites post about it, plus people have been IMing me about it ...


Posted by roy on September 4, 2006 at 12:24 AM in Ramblings | 5 Comments
Posted by roy on September 4, 2006 at 11:00 AM in Ramblings | Add a comment

Are you looking for a Mac G5? Well, I may have "accidentally" bought a G5, but you can save me from my mistake!

The backstory: Yush and I were talking about Chris' extra G5 that he got that he's selling on eBay. We decide to help a buddy out and try to make the auction seem really active by bidding on it. (How great would it be for Chris to wake up and see his is the most active Mac G5 auction!) Except we bid in $25 increments cause we really don't want to be the high bidder in an auction. I figure (without researching) that as long as we keep our bids under $2K, we'll be "safe" (in that, somebody will come and outbid us).

Me, being an alpha male and the top of the pecking order, defeat Yush handily in a mighty bidding war (eBay bidding log) with the last bid of $1725. Then I do a search on completed eBay items and find that .. they ... don't ... really ... go ... higher... than... $1800/$1900 with the lower configured systems.


I may accidentally end up buying a Mac G5 (if I end up winning, I'll get to fulfill that long-life fantasy of owning a G5 for pure aesthetics, as I don't plan on using it for anything in particular).

But please, help me fix my mistake by telling all your friends to bid on this Mac G5 and save me from my mistake-of-the-month!

Update: I won!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by roy on September 4, 2006 at 09:51 PM in Foolishness | 10 Comments

Facebook is a very well-run site. They have a very usable and functional design. Their features are rolled out very well (nothing breaks, and it doesn't make people go "Whaaaa?"), and their features are actually really cool (that developer's API is something I've been meaning to check out).

Honestly, if I could run a website project as well as they have, I would be more than enthralled.

Posted by roy on September 5, 2006 at 10:24 AM in Web Development | 8 Comments

Seriously, what is up with all these niche job sites?

Posted by roy on September 5, 2006 at 06:54 PM in Web Development | 2 Comments

You can now put a price on humor: $1721.90 + $3.10 S/H. Oh, the costs I pay in trying to be humorous...

I guess the joke was on me.

Currently listening to: Old 97's - King of All the World
Posted by roy on September 6, 2006 at 04:24 PM in Ramblings | Add a comment

I'm so sad that I may never get to watch another episode of Arrested Development again. In honor of the show, I changed my phone ringtone to this WONDERFUL song ...

I can't get over the recurring chicken dance joke from Arrested Development:

Currently listening to: Andre Nickatina - AYO for Yayo
Posted by roy on September 7, 2006 at 02:22 AM in Ramblings | 4 Comments

Amusing how wrong my Facebook post was - I actually hadn't taken a look at the new features extensively before posting that - that post was more in response to the way they had rolled out photos a year ago, their developer's API, their "status notes," and other features like that.

This whole new "news feed" uproar IS very amusing though. Matt pointed out that people are discovering "protest" groups *through* their news feed and then joining them.

Dave Winer gets it (partially) wrong though:

Then the city changes the way traffic flows, you still put out the bowl of fruit and your gate is still open, but now instead of 20 people passing your property, 2000 people pass. And you only know 20 of them! Now your yard is filled with strangers, people with odd habits. The same rules apply, your gate is open, all passers-by are welcome, but the result is very different. Someone should have given you a heads-up letting you know this change was coming. Maybe you would have put a lock on the gate and given keys to your friends.

Facebook's new features doesn't make it any easier to see strangers, or to expose your Facebook to more strangers - it makes it easier for people you explicitly list as friends to visit your Facebook. The reason this is a problem is because Facebook offers no granularity to "friends." A person is either your "friend" or he/she is not. This poses a problem as people add hundreds of aquantainces - but again, they chose to add these people as "friends".

Let's just get this fact out of the way: College students have no concept of privacy online. That's why students post retarded pictures of them being drunk (underage, too, good god) on these public websites - they have some notion that because not everybody can see it, it's somehow "private".

The reason why Facebook's news feed has been deemed "stalkerish" is overloads you with senseless details about your friends. For example, if I were to remove "Grey's Anatomy" from my "Favorite Shows" list, it would show up my 200 friends' "news feed." That is senseless, and it just adds to the whole "stalkerish" feeling. Here's another example from my news feed right now:

Facebook offers a feature called "Wall-to-Wall," where YOU can leave a message on somebody else's wall for THEM.

So why does it show up on a news feed? Why would all my friends want to be notified that I left a message for somebody else? These are the types of features that are showing up on "news feed."

Another reason this feature sucks is because it has too many negative features. It tells you when people break up (when they change their status from "in a relationship with ____" to "single"). It also tells you when you leave groups, and what items you remove from your profile. It's like when you're at your friend's party and you want to slip out - it used to be the case that you could just leave quietly without anybody noticing. Now there's a megaphone at the door saying "ROY KIM IS LEAVING THIS PARTY." A total bummer, and it makes me feel out of control.

The whole "Sharing of Information" and "Information Aggregation" is great, but people don't want to seem like they're updating their Facebook's all the time (which they really are). My suggestion for Mark and the Facebook crew:

Don't track any profile changes in your news feed. Track as people join groups, as people add friends, and as photos are tagged to people. Remember that these are all social networking features; highlight those networking features. And it's astounding that you still don't get it. The point isn't that the proper "privacy control" features weren't built in - now everytime somebody updates their profile, they have to delete the notification. That is extra work. That is a bad system. The fact that by default, it tells everybody everything you did is BAD. Leave the features off, by DEFAULT.

An interesting related note: Xanga was fined one million for violation of the COPPA: I didn't know anybody actually took that seriously. So now 13-year olds have to take the extra step of hitting the "I'm older than 13 checkbox" AND providing a birthdate that is older than 13 ... wow, that's really protecting them.

Posted by roy on September 8, 2006 at 09:50 AM in Ramblings | 2 Comments

A few mantras that help me: (within a tournament/SNG setting, cash games are a different beast altogether)

  • Don't chase draws out of position
  • Make positional bluffs only (except in small pots with limped players on a dead board)
  • Lead, don't follow raises with weak hands (AJ and below unpaired))
  • Be aware of trips
  • They're probably not bluffing

Got more?

Currently listening to: Lenny Williams - Because I Love You
Posted by roy on September 10, 2006 at 01:29 PM in Poker | 4 Comments

I rarely post bad beats, so I'll do the opposite and post my wet-dream hand: (preflop was all limping)

*** FLOP *** [4s 9s 6h]
Boredr83: checks
ghadgi: bets 120
logger1948: calls 120
roy_kim: raises 180 to 300
Juan Doe: raises 370 to 670 and is all-in
Boredr83: folds
ghadgi: calls 550
logger1948: calls 550
roy_kim: raises 1500 to 2170 and is all-in
ghadgi: calls 810 and is all-in
logger1948: calls 530 and is all-in

Give it some thought. What hand do I have here?

*** TURN *** [4s 9s 6h] [Kh]
*** RIVER *** [4s 9s 6h Kh] [6s]
*** SHOW DOWN ***
ghadgi: shows [7c 5s] (a pair of Sixes)
roy_kim: shows [9c 9h] (a full house, Nines full of Sixes)
roy_kim collected 560 from side pot-2
logger1948: shows [Qd Qs] (two pair, Queens and Sixes)
roy_kim collected 1590 from side pot-1
Juan Doe: shows [Kc 9d] (two pair, Kings and Nines)
roy_kim said, "thanks donks"

Look back at what each player had and what decisions they faced post-flop. Horrible decisions all the way around - I cannot justify ANY play ANY of them made. I don't ever trash-talk btw (this was the only time cause their play was just mind-bogglingly horrible).

Currently listening to: Elliott Smith - Waltz # 2
Posted by roy on September 10, 2006 at 06:20 PM in Poker | 5 Comments

words cannot describe how pissed i am right now. my internet has always cut off at the most inopportune moments, and i just figured out why: apparently my telephone loves to interrupt my wireless router. i always wondered why my connection would drop during phone calls ...

i'm boycotting belkin routers cause the last one imploded on me, and tech support was no help. now it seems that linksys (with the coveted cisco logo on it) is just as shitty. are there ANY good routers out there??? and why the HELL do they make telephones and routers on the same frequency channels??????????????

ugh, not a good way to start monday morning.

Posted by roy on September 11, 2006 at 06:45 AM in Ramblings | 5 Comments

If you're like me, you tend to pre-order a lot of stuff on Amazon (cause Amazon Prime kicks so much ass). However, Amazon tends to charge you really close to the list price when you preorder items; this isn't so great when the price drops after the first week. (For example, I preordered Lost Season 2 for $59.99, then the price dropped to $35, whoa!)

Amazon will refund the difference on any price drop within 30 days of purchase - just go to this page, select "Refund Inquiry," and fill out the request with your item. I got $25 back for my Lost DVD ... quickest $25 I got back ever :)

Note: If your order doesn't show up on the recent list, put in your order number manually into the comment field

Currently listening to: The Hereafter - Back Where I Was
Posted by roy on September 14, 2006 at 03:27 PM in Ramblings | Add a comment

Today was one of those "pass-out-on-the-bed-after-work-listening-to-radiohead-cause-you're-just-so-tired" type of days.

In any case, as soon as I hit the sack, the doorbell rang. I went down, and it was one of those kids selling magazine subscriptions for school. I remember when I had to do that; looking back it's so evil to force little kids to be your door-to-door salesmen for such things. Anyways, I was thinking how it's been so long since people can self-publish, yet there really isn't a dominance of e-mags yet (by e-mags, I mean something like alistapart). It's amazing that discoverability is still so shitty this day in age - my reading list has stagnated (I add maybe one feed every two weeks or so). It'd be really cool if there was an e-mag that just highlighted really well-written posts about life (general things, nothing too topical) every month or so from different authors across the web. There have got to be high school students, college students, medical students, law students out there who all have really interesting things to say about their life experiences, and I'm sure they're writing away ... I'd sure like to read those posts. I'd actually look to sites like Xanga and LiveJournal for posts like that - there are a few very well written Xanga and Livejournals out there that just don't get the credit that domain-hosted bloggers seem to get.

Some of the most interesting blogs I've read (example) are the personal ones about a life completely different than mine.

Currently listening to: radiohead - karma police
Posted by roy on September 14, 2006 at 05:37 PM in Ramblings | 2 Comments

Narcissism is great. Narcissism is why I'm writing this post, as I got this email from long-time commenter PM5K:

This is PM5K from www.ConsoleStop.com. Just changed my domain name to ConsoleImports.com and was wondering if you might be able to mention the new URL on your Tabulas page.

I don't know that it would make much difference but I’m trying to get the new name out there.

I made you a pretty picture:

Damn right it won't make a shred of a difference. Who the hell reads my blog anyways????????????

Good job on the picture!

Currently listening to: Alphaville - Forever Young
Posted by roy on September 15, 2006 at 03:36 PM in Ramblings | 6 Comments

On Monday (Sept 18th) at 7PM downstairs at Chapel Hill Public Library, I'll be doing a presentation on wiki.com, which is powered by MindTouch's DekiWiki product. I'll run through common tasks and show how easy it is to use MindTouch's DekiWiki. Feel free to come on out. There's also a presentation about Lyceum, the WordPress multi-user fork, so things should be interesting. More information here.

Currently listening to: The Who - Teenage Wasteland
Posted by roy on September 16, 2006 at 11:20 PM in Ramblings | Add a comment

I just spent three hours deleting spam on Tabulas. This is a losing battle. I cleaned up tagboards and comments, and made stricter captcha checking (the spammers were getting around captcha checks by avoiding putting links in the content of the comment, now all guest commenters have to pass a simple captcha test). It's only a matter of time before the spammers start OCRing the text... and thus it goes on.

Some changes I've made:

  • Tagboards now support IP banning. I don't think this will help, because most spammers are submitting false IP addresses with every post
  • I've added a noindex attribute on the page, which means search engines will stop picking up those pages; hopefully removing the google pagerank incentive will do something to stem that tide

I can continue to spend time building more advanced comment tools, but I think the long-run, there's only two real possible solutions (both which I may pursue in tandem):

  • Start passing all comments and tagboard entries through akismet, which is an automated spam filter service provided by the fine folks who work on Wordpress. The only downside here is that it's very expensive (200,000 calls is $200/month, which means every 1000 comments costs me $1). I'm thinking I could implement it just for guest commenting, which may be a good short-term stopgap solution. This wouldn't include tagboards, which would still pose a problem.
  • Hire somebody to start filtering through the comments/tagboard entries by guest posters manually. Costly, but probably the most effective way of getting things done

For the time being, I'm going to continue to develop internal tools to battle spam; by being really vigilant and being timely with deleting spam, I'm hoping I can simply discourage spammers. It's that whole "Fixing Broken Windows theory...

Currently listening to: Neil Diamond - Sweet Caroline
Posted by roy on September 17, 2006 at 01:40 PM in Tabulas | 4 Comments

dear intarweb, what is a payroll tax?

the reason i ask is from this article which has a speech from algore:

For the last fourteen years, I have advocated the elimination of all payroll taxes including those for social security and unemployment compensationand the replacement of that revenue in the form of pollution taxes principally on CO2. The overall level of taxation would remain exactly the same. It would be, in other words, a revenue neutral tax swap. But, instead of discouraging businesses from hiring more employees, it would discourage business from producing more pollution.

excluding the fact i have no idea what a payroll tax is, this sounds like a good idea. i'm super-cereal.

I looked online and got it defined as: "Payroll taxes are the state and federal taxes that you, as an employer, are required to withhold and/or to pay on behalf of your employees. You are required to withhold state and federal income taxes as well as social security and Medicare taxes from your employees' wages.

So payroll tax is federal income tax + state income tax + social securty + medicare taxes? If so, what impact does abolishing payroll taxes have on me?

very confused, clarification is much appreciated.

. . .

did you know the senate is quietly voting to let bush off the hook for illegally wiretapping? greeaattttt.

. . .

and a funny south park episode, featuring algore's "manbearpig," the "half-man, half-bear, half-pig" beast that threatens humanity ...

Currently listening to: The Hereafter - Back Where I Was
Posted by roy on September 18, 2006 at 10:35 PM in Ramblings | 1 Comments

My primary work machine (a tablet) has a 12.1" display. The nice UPS man just delivered my NEW monitor: the godlyDell 2407WFP (24"). I've nearly 4x my available work space. [By the way, I spent a lot of time agonizing over whether I should just buy the Apple versions which are more expensive because I hate Dell that much, but there just wasn't another option for a monitor that was as good, as big that was cheap (mine was $680-ish). However, I will still never ever ever buy a laptop or desktop from Dell ever again. So I'm still OK.]

Here's a crappy comparison shot taken from my cellphone:

I can immediately put this to work by loading up 2x as many spam tags to delete at once!!! Woo hoo!!!!

Posted by roy on September 19, 2006 at 12:28 PM in Ramblings | 5 Comments

While in a work conference call, I was bouncing a foam football against the ceiling. The thing bounced at a weird angle and plopped me right in the glasses. Now my glasses are crooked.

Currently listening to: Eric Clapton - Eric Clapton - Layla (orig)
Posted by roy on September 20, 2006 at 11:25 AM in Ramblings | 5 Comments

This is insane:

I don't see how you don't break your ankles dropping off huge jumps like that.

Posted by roy on September 25, 2006 at 09:31 AM in Ramblings | 2 Comments

I was surprised to know that The Fray are on their second single release. I was suprised because their second song sounds exactly like the first one. I could listen to both and not know which title goes to which one.

That doesn't detract from their listenability - I bought Linkin Park's first CD even though every track on there sounded the same. It was my favorite CD for a whole two weeks too (which is pretty good).

This reminds me of that Nickelback mashup where a clever person mixed together Nickelback's first two songs into one song - left headphone plays one song, right headphone plays the other song... and it sounds like one song. I bet you could do the same thing with the Fray.

. . .

cool post by jahmeel - it's that snippets thing again!

Posted by roy on September 25, 2006 at 10:05 AM in Music | 5 Comments

I think I'm finally overcoming the inertia that is holding me back from change.

I've been running scripts for the past week transferring ALL static files to Amazon's S3 service. In the past, I had been just using S3 for backups of static files (so in case my servers went up in flames, I would have backups of all your images). Two weeks ago, I finally decided that if I am to "compete" (and by this, I mean to give up a fight that's not laughable, because the reality is I'll never be able to compete with all the $$$ backing all these sites like Vox and Xanga and MySpace), I have grow leaner. Less things I have to maintain = more time to develop features.

Sometime next week, I'm going to do the switchover to abandon aces.tabulas.com, lca.tabulas.com, and jbiel.tabulas.com as static file servers and instead to serve everything up from Amazon S3. I'm working on making the transition as seamless as possible (which includes going through all the old entries and updating absolute links to images on the old file servers to the new locations) so you don't have to do anything.

Oh yeah, I am also declaring a temporary victory over the spammers on the tagboards and comments. Since I required all guests to pass a captcha, there's been nearly zero spam (I haven't seen any, but maybe a few have gone through). I'll enjoy this spam reprieve, because I'm sure the spammers will be back.

So I have actually been working on Tabulas the past two weeks with all my spare time :) Soon I'll be able to reap the rewards of all that backend work ... and so will you!

Posted by roy on September 26, 2006 at 09:51 PM in Tabulas | 8 Comments

Headline news: Giant bugs the size of football stadiums destroy crops in Germany - how long until they find their way over to here?

Hug-a-thug: the new way in battling drug dealers?

Posted by roy on September 27, 2006 at 02:22 PM in Foolishness | 1 Comments

The BEST Conan O'Brien skit EVAR!!!!!!!1

Conan points to his engine: "I call this the Ranch. Do you know why?"
Other dude: "I have no idea"
Conan: "Cause this is where my 220 horses live."

Roffles. FORD TAURUS 4EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by roy on September 28, 2006 at 12:14 PM in Foolishness | 2 Comments

This entry brought to you by the letter "Q" and this classic Calvin and Hobbes strip:

. . .

I love serendipitous moments. I especially love it when Matchbox 20's "3AM" starts playing on my music player at 3am when on random shuffle (so far it's only happened once, I'm eagerly awaiting the day it happens again - and no, I'm not allowed to skew it by making a shorter playlist). Actually, I think I can extend this to anytime a topical song starts playing. For example, I could be scheming on how to bring down my #1 enemy and then Tupac's "Hit 'Em Up" comes on. Or maybe I'm walking around campus with my iPod and the 1000 AD Theme Song for Chrono Trigger comes on (it's just music that plays while you explore the town in Chrono Trigger, the best RPG ever created).

. . .

Speaking of which, my copy of Serendipity is missing. Whoever stole it will be my #1 enemy.

. . .

This girl extended the million-dollar homepage idea to getting herself a MacBook. And it looks like it worked. Oh, the joys of being a cute (webdesigner) girl. (there's a picture of her at the bottom of the page).

. . .

I've been forcing myself to use the Mac a bit more, and I can't say I've been more productive on it - most of my productivity probably comes from having a 24" monitor and not from the platform itself. Actually my SFTP uploader for Mac is a lot worse than the one I was using for my PC - I'm using Fetch and it doesn't support two-pane (so dragging/dropping is a pain in the ASS). I guess I'm sorta forced to figure out how to set-up the Tabulas codebase locally using MAMP and work from there. I'm starting to get used to the quirks of TextMate with its autoformatting, so things are going ok there. Overall, I'm acclimatizing pretty well, although I do (sorta) miss the PC platform ...

SPEAKING OF WHICH (this paragraph deserves the caps lock) WILL SOMEBODY PLEASE MAKE MIDDLE CLICK WORK F*CKING CORRECTLY FOR FIREFOX FOR MAC OS X?! Seriously: middle-click opens tabs, middle-click closes tabs. I've gotten the first part working (go to System Preferences and set your middle click to Option + Click), but the second part won't work. I've installed that stupid workaround Tab X plugin to add a close button to each tab, but middle-click is SO MUCH BETTER. PLEASE SOMEBODY FIX THIS.

. . .

I love how toggle applications (Alt+Tab) and quick programs (Alt+Q) are implemented are on Mac (if you miss the joke, look at the keyboard).

. . .

4by6.com, the excellent business card/poster printing company (the Tabulas business cards I ordered from them are of fantastic quality) was running a sale on business card (code EXTEND50) which cut the price of their 4/1 business cards (color and gloss on one side, back is black & white) to $50 for 500. I could not pass up this opportunity to get my "apology" personal business cards printed.

These would be "business" cards that I would pass out after I wronged somebody. Here are the ones I sent off to be printed: (the bunny image was stolen off of CuteOverload, but these cards are just for me and my friends so I'm going to assume it's ok; if not, I'll send one of the cards to the owner of that picture)

The front:

The back:

"Hygiene" is spelt correctly on the actual cards, I'm just too lazy to update my psd)

The back actually has my REAL signature (thank goodness for that tablet PC!), so it's worth it's weight in paper.

If I've wronged you in any way, please feel free to leave a comment. I'll send you a personal apology through the mail (I'll need your address through PM or email at roy@tabulas.com). ;)

. . .

A short plug for MindTouch: check out the demo from UNC alum Aaron (co-founder of MT) at DEMOFall. We also launched a new corporate site, which is pretty ho-hum. The only upside to that was that I got to start becoming intimately familiar with the CMS from hell (all CMS are from hell, not just this one) called DRUPAL. Seriously, Drupal is kinda interesting, but the damn thing just feels way overengineered.

You can buy our DekiBox appliance (which contains DekiWiki) from our site: the actual appliance looks pretty slick:

I wonder if I can convince MT to give me a discount to get my own ;)

. . .

I'm going to engage in some navel-gazing here and say this is a pretty solid entry. I'm also going to point out that I could have split this entry up into like 5 separate entries and had a week's worth of writing material, but HOMIE DON'T ROLL LIKE DAT. I GIVE YOU WHATEVER I FEEL LIKE SAYING AT ONCE. I DONT' DO NONE OF THAT EDITING JOUNK; I GIVE YOU ALL THE MEDIOCRITY AT ONCE, LIKE A MCDONALD'S MEAL.

. . .

Jaymee Ong (guess who made her fan-site a long time ago?) is blogging.

Posted by roy on September 28, 2006 at 10:49 PM in Ramblings, Web Development, Foolishness, Tabulas, MindTouch | 4 Comments

I was checking out AlexaStreet, which is a fantasy stock-market game based on websites' popularity. It uses traffic rankings from Alexa to determine the "value" of a site, and you can buy and sell shares based on it. (Very similar to alexashares.com and alexadex.com).

I noticed peter (I'm assuming it's this peter, if it's not, i'll send you an apology business card ASAP) was the sole holder of Tabulas.com stock.

Here is a screenshot of how well his Tabulas stock is doing comparatively to his other holdings:

That's right, he's earned 13% in a week! What's the lesson here, children?


The stock of Tabulas seems to have dropped a bit since this screenshot... oops

Posted by roy on September 28, 2006 at 11:58 PM in Foolishness, Tabulas | 12 Comments
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