2010 in review

As always, every year would be an eventful and interesting year for me. Lots of ups and downs which is the circle of life. Here's what happened in 2010.


I am still living in Taman Universiti, working at the same place I've been for the past 4 years. And of course we still regularly visits IKEA like any other normal family does.
My 3rd semester for IS 110 at UiTM starts this month. Aside from that, nothing much happens in January.


In February we visited iCity in Shah Alam. Parking was horrible but we did enjoy seeing the many lighted trees. I heard that you need to pay parking and entrance fees to go in there now which is why I'm not going back there again, ever.

We also visited Linda's sister place in Manjung, Perak. Before that a motorcyclist crashed into the side of our car leaving this huge ugly dent and a fortune to fix.

February is also the month my only brother got married to the girl of his choice. She hailed from Felda Besout in Tanjung Malim, Perak. All I can say is they're a match made in heaven, amen. Faiz is currently spreading the teachings of Islam with his tabligh team in Hong Kong, Korea and Macao.


Early this month I was involved in this big operation to transport and install a bunch of computers and servers from one location to another. The exercise lasted some 48 hours and naturally I had to sleep on the floor at the site office, for a couple of hours only that is. Not my first time though.

I took my family to Malaysia Agriculture Park in Bukit Cerakah Shah Alam. Had a good time watching the animals and plants and of course the 4 seasons climate house.

Add this to another on of the universe' greatest mysteries because my rear windscreen broke to pieces magically one afternoon by itself. No signs of vandalism so I suspect it's the hot temperature plus bad luck. Thank God for windscreen insurances.

We also visited our potential future home in Taman Puncak Jalil for the first time.


My wife no longer had to endure long distance and lengthy commute to her office in KL after she was finally successful in her application to transfer nearby to Seri Kembangan. No more going out early and dropping and waiting for her at the train station but of course I still had to give her a lift everyday to her new office.

Adam watched her first movie at the TGV cinema at the Mines Shopping Fair. I guess Iron Man 2 was to early for him.

Me, wife and the kids visited Petrosains at KLCC for the first time.


It took us 3 months but we finally managed to get through all the hassle of buying our first house. You have no idea the trouble and how much money we had to spend (and borrow) to purchase this house including furniture and a little renovation but we did it in the end.

I also started using an iPhone again. Still paying for that thing until today.


Home sweet home! We moved in late May into Casa Riana Apartment. It looks very empty now but somewhere in IKEA, there's a bunch of furniture with our names written on them waiting for us to take them home!

It was my younger sister Izni's turn to get married this time. We travelled home to Pasir Mas to help with the wedding. She's now expecting her first child.


Adam's final Sports Day at his kindy. We didn't win many games or activities this time compared to last year.


Took our Proton Savvy for service and finally changed the timing belt kit for nearly 700 ringgit. About time too because the mechanic said it's an accident waiting to happen.

We bought a new sofa bed from IKEA, you know so that our guests can sleep more comfortably.

I spent our Hari Raya (Eid) this year at my wife's place in Tanah Merah. Coincidentally the theme for this year was also red. Later that evening in Pasir Mas I was bitten by an aedes mosquito and showed symptoms of dengue. Thankfully my body was too strong for the virus so I didn't suffer enough to be warded. Still it was horrible being sick.


A week after Raya I got better from my illness and brought my family to Cameron Highlands for the first time. The place was gorgeous and cool and we had a really good time. Stayed at the nice MARDI apartment.


We held a small open house at our place just for our closest family members and neighbors. Man it was lots of work, open houses. As you can see, I got fatter and shaved my head again this month.


Went to Adam's little graduation and performance day organized by his kindergarten at Cyberjaya Lake Club.

Later that week we went home to Tanah Merah by train and left our children (with heavy heart of course) there to spend some time with their grandparent and aunts. We missed them terribly the whole time. This month happens to be my birthday too on the 24th :)


We finally changed our crooked rims and balding tires at this workshop in Klang thanks to my generous wife.

Later that month I sold my iPhone to get the magical and revolutionary device, the iPad.

After much work, we managed to get Adam transferred from Taman Universiti to this new school in Taman Desaminium which is closer to home. He'll be learning there for the next 6 years or so.

So that's how my year have been, not bad I must. Hopefully next year will be more awesome. Happy New Year!

SK Taman Desaminium

If you live around Taman Pinggiran Putra, Taman Equine, Taman Lestari Perdana, Kota Perdana and Taman Puncak Jalil, you should know that two new school has opened this year in Taman Desaminium near here. One is primary school - SK Taman Desaminium and another is a secondary school - SMK Taman Desaminium.

Both schools are located at Taman Desaminium between Taman Lestari Perdana and Taman Puncak Jalil. The secondary school is beige and the primary school next to it is in bright orange.

Last year I registered my 7 year old kid at SK Taman Universiti because we have no idea when SK Taman Desaminium will be open. It was not until last week that we found out the school is indeed opening next year and the registration for students ends like a few days ago. So we rushed to register Adam and requested a transfer to the new school.

Thankfully Adam made it to the list. So today was orientation day at SK Taman Desaminium. The program starts at 8:30 AM but we didn't arrive until 9:00 AM despite the school being just 5 kilometers away from our place. I blame it on Mia who took forever to wake up and shower.

There was a some briefing by the teachers of the school but we missed most of it. There sure is a lot of students registered at SK Taman Desaminium because I can see every class has at least 30 pupils. SMK Desaminium meanwhile hardly has any students.

After the briefing, each class teachers took the children for a tour of the school.

Starting with their classroom.

I remember my old classroom had those huge naco windows on both side of the wall. The newly finished SK Desaminium has only one of those and the other side has these smaller windows which made the class looked like a bat cave.

Anyway at least all the table, chair and furniture are new. Adam got 34 new classmates today.

The kids sure are quiet and well-behaved on their first day at school. I'm sure they won't be so docile in a couple of months.

Being a new school and all I can see all the facilities and physical amenities are ready. Don't know about the teachers though because from what I heard some classes don't have teachers yet.

This is Adam's class teacher Cikgu Eimie. Hi Cikgu!

The canteen looked completely overwhelmed today with all the students. Meals start from RM1.00 a plate. I wonder how much I should give Adam everyday for school. Perhaps his mother would pack him lunch or something.

Although I can see Adam's school from my house, we still had to pay a school bus to pick him up after school and drop him at the nursery. That's RM35.00 a month.

SK Desaminium has only one session in the morning and class starts January 3rd that is next Monday.
All primary school in Malaysia has this new curriculum called KSSR which I have no idea what that's all about. But from my insider's information, students doesn't have to sit for exams like every month or at the end of the year. Instead their teachers will give an ongoing evaluation based on their performance and learning rate.

They will also be graded from Band 1 to Band 5 with the latter being the best. For Physical Education class (Pendidikan Jasmani), students can wear their sports attire the whole day at school. There's also some new subjects being thought such as Science, Technology, Music, Visual Art and Arabic language. I hope Adam will fare better in Arabic than I did. I still remember vividly how I flunk that subject in primary school.

SK Desaminium is not that easy to find since it's tucked quite some way in between the Desaminium condominiums and also because there are not a single signboard pointing to the school. You just have to look for the Desaminium condos then and find the school next to the condos and the driving range in Taman Lestari Perdana.

So if you're thinking of entering your kids into this school next year, better start now. Just register online at the state education department website, download and bring the application form to the school along with the necessary documents like their birth certificate, parent's identity card copy, marriage certificate, payslip of one of the parent and also some utilities bill.

The school now has a telephone number: 03-89413905

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Afif App Awards 2010

Welcome to the 2nd annual Afif App Awards (see the inaugural award here. This award is dedicated to all the software and apps developer who had made my life easier with their innovation, creativity and hard work. Of course no real awards will be rewarded, just one big thank you from me for their awesomeness. And as always, all of my favorite app here are either open source or completely free.

Without further ado, here are this year's recipient in no particular order:

Best Online Syncing App - Dropbox (Windows,Mac,Linux,Web,Smartphone)

Although there are nearly a dozen free online syncing tools available now, some with bigger storage size (like SugarSync), Dropbox still leads the pack for its speed, reliability and cross-platform support.

Best Notetaking App - Evernote (Windows,Mac,Smartphone)

While facing stiff competition from Simplenote and Springpad, Evernote still made it as the best notetaking App this year due to its robustness and many features.

Best Graphic Editor - GIMP (Windows,Mac,Linux)

Open source, lightweight and almost as good as any off-the-shelf Adobe graphic suite, GIMP is still my favorite choice for an all round graphic editor.

Best Web Browser - Google Chrome (Windows,Mac,Linux)

Firefox could still be me favorite browser if only it doesn't hog too much memory and bring my Windows system to a standstill during heavy use. Google Chrome blazes past Mozilla Firefox to be my favorite browser this year.

Best Online Productivity App - Google Docs (Web)

Google Docs beats its computer in term of speed and ease of use. Furthermore an increasing number of web and mobile apps has made online sync available with Google Docs making it more accessible to a whole range of new devices. If only Google would upgrade its meager 1GB space limit.

Best Optical Media Burning App - ImgBurn (Windows,Linux with Wine)

ImgBurn is a powerful yet lightweight CD/DVD/Blu-Ray burning application that packs similar features to established apps such as Nero and Roxio but still totally free.

Best Password Manager - LastPass (Windows,Mac,Linux,Smartphone,Web)

Guess how many password do I have to key in everyday? Only one, thanks to LastPass who not only remembers all my passwords for me but also offers to fill web forms for me. What would I do without it.

Best Remote Access App - LogMeIn (Windows,Mac)

LogMeIn enables me to log on and control remote PC and Mac anywhere in the world. Need I say more?

Best Desktop Sync App - Synkron (Windows,Mac,Linux)

Synkron lets you sync files and folders across different folders on local or networked computers. You can also schedule for synchronization at regular interval and sync multiple folders and destination. Great for backing up your PC and servers because it's lightweight, easy to use and also open source.

Best Audio/Video Transcoding App - XMedia Recode (Windows)

XMedia Recode lets you choose from hundreds of available presets for transcoding your audio/video according to your device of choice. For example there's a preset for iPhone, iPad, Sony Walkman, Sony PSP, Creative Zen, XBox, Nokia phone and dozens more. Best for encoding multiple files and it also allows you to allocate CPU resource and shutdowns your PC when you finishes. Awesome.