5 things that used to be common around me

1. Photo Albums Collection
I’m not talking about Flickr, Picasa or Fotopages (de facto Malaysian online photo album site), but I’m talking about the classic Photo Album books. Once, every household must have Photo Albums, whether it is about Weddings, Family Vacation, New Born Baby, or just some random photos. Back in those days photo album housed 3R sized photos that was taken by cameras that used 35mm photographic film (some of them needs to be rewound manually!).

In Malaysia (at least in Malay culture, more than 15 years ago), photo albums is a common item in every house and are usually stored in the Living Room, where it served as a sort of entertainment to the guests. Makcik/Pakcik/Acquaintance of the family would be invited to browse through photo albums while the host prepare refreshment, this is the usual practice especially when the guest just stop by the house because the want to visit (read: ziarah) the host who are just back from a long vacation (ie: umrah, etc) or recently wed, or just having a newborn baby.

Photo Album

I think most of you would agree that photo albums have become less significant nowadays. How many are you that still keep these photo albums? I think the only photo album still common in every household is the wedding photo album, and I bet that was stashed in parts unknown, somewhere under the bed or closet instead of the living room.

Photo Album

p/s: Photo Albums becomes so rare that I even had difficulties in getting its sample image.

2. Public Phone (Booth)
Remember public phone ? It was very common to have phone booth around back then, 15 years ago. The older generation phone booth accepts coins, and the newer one accepts prepaid phone card which you can buy from convenience store. Now since almost everybody afford to own a mobile phone, phone booth is less common now.

Phone booth was previously a required fixture in public university and colleges and shopping complexes, now its almost nowhere to be seen

p/s: I fondly recalled my friends used to get free calls from public phones using a technique call “short mengeshort” which involves the use of paperclip around late 1990s.

3. TM-Issued Phone Directory Book
Previously Phone Directory Book is a must-have for every household that have fixed-line phone. Divided into three main parts (Peach Pages, White Pages and Yellow Pages), the Peach Page list the phone numbers of government agencies as well as their addresses. White Page on the other hand list the fixed-line phone numbers of common folks, together with their addresses arranged in alphabetical order. Yellow pages was once a must-have addition to the phone directory because it lists the phone number of the nearest exterminators, furniture store and workshop service.

When did the last time you’ve even refer the TM-issued Phone Directory Book?

4. Rabbit Ear Antenna
Back 10-15 years ago, almost every home relies on the venerable Rabbit Ear Antenna for TV Reception, couple with Booster (most popular in Perlis, Malaysia), you will get excellent reception of the government-run RTM station ( TV1, TV2) with a slight drawback as boostered Rabbit Ear antenna is very sensitive to kereta kontrol (RC Car).

Now most people would either subscribed to Astro, or in my case – The Torrent TV station, which requires neither Rabbit Ear Antenna nor Booster.

Here is the photo of a rabbit ear antenna:

Rabbit Ears Antenna

5. Cassette and Sony Walkman Portable Player
Once considered a cool gadget that Johnny Depp used to strap around his waist on “Nightmare on Elm Street” :


Sony Walkman Cassette Player

The cassette and Sony Walkman was considered one of the common item for teenagers. It runs on TWO (2) AA batteries with the most advance type display digital readouts and can even ‘flip’ the cassette automatically. Sony Walkman even has AMS feature (Automatic Music Sensor) where it can detect the start of a song automatically when using fast-forward/reverse (just like switching CD track).

Cassette and Walkman (portable cassette player) are now has been displaced by MP3 players, iPods or plain Feature Phone.

Too much humidity! – Alor Setar heat is unbearable, feels like 40°C (100 Fahrenheit)

Alor Setar City

Phew, it’s only the first week of June, and yet I felt the heat is already unbearable in Alor Setar (map)

I’ve checked popular weather forecast websites, and most of it gave a readout of 27 °C (80° Fahrenheit), but with the humidity level around 80% (tropical weather) makes it feel like its actually 40 °C (100° Fahrenheit) out there…

Alor Setar City

I don’t have air-conditioning unit, nor I’m planning to get one, but I do hope the heat doesn’t last very long…

Oh dear, I missed September….

The Main Post Office in Alor Setar need more parking spaces!

I don’t know if any of the readers have gone to the Main Post Office in Alor Setar (Malaysia), but during the last few months, I’ve noticed the parking space in the place has exceeded its designated capacity.

This prompted post office customers to double park, park in a non-designated spot or even recklessly driving into the already crowded lane in order to spot an empty parking space. Not only this would be time consuming, but it would also poses danger to the passengers as well as the passer-by. I doubt I’ll be seeing any improvement pretty soon, the Post Office was built without any consideration for future expansion, especially with the kind of traffic it attracts.

However come to think about it, the worst Post Office in this category probably should go to Kangar Main Post Office, which offer virtually no parking spot, even for motorcycle, and people has to deal with almost an hour long of vehicle queue to conduct their businesses (pay bills, send package) through its ‘convenient’ drive-thru counter. Heck, the Main Post office doesn’t even handle Pos-Laju and Pos Express on their own, due to the location restriction.

Welp, guess any new govt building now should consider the parking space factor, they should build an undegroung parking lot as well as multi-storey ones.

Kelas Persediaan RAE 2008-1 di Lokalan Alor Setar, Kedah

Sukacitanya dimaklumkan, rakan rakan radio amatur di sekitar lokalan Kota Setar telah menganjurkan kelas RAE sebagai persediaan menghadapi peperiksaan RAE 2008-1. Butiran seperti dibawah :

Kepada rakan rakan yang akan menduduki kelas RAE 2008-1 boleh menghadiri Kelas Persediaan RAE yang dianjurkan oleh rakan rakan lokalan Kota Setar. Butiran seperti di bawah :

Hari : Setiap Jumaat (Starting 16 Mei 2008)
Masa : 9.00 malam
Tempat : Sek Men Dato’ Syed Omar Alor Setar
Contact person : 9w2aze (019-4494559), 9w2crm (013-4722875)

Peta Lokasi : http://wikimapia.org/#lat=6.1419415&lon=100.3872085&z=16&l=0&m=a&v=2

Forum Komuniti Radio Amatur ASHamradio.com

Sukacitanya dimaklumkan forum Komuniti Radio Amatur Kota Setar (Kota Setar Amateur Radio Community) secara rasminya telah dilancarkan minggu lepas. Forum ini memberikan ruang kepada rakan rakan ham dan peminat Radio Amatur untuk berkongsi pendapat dan juga berbincang mengenai hobi berkaitan komunikasi radio.

Repeater Gunung Keriang

Jom kita pakat meramaikan forum ASHamradio !

Panoramic view of Rice Fields in Kedah, Malaysia

Here’s a panoramic view of a paddy fields taken from Nikon Coolpix 5200 camera. This is my first attempt in taking panoramic photograph, so please excuse me for the imperfection

This photo was taken in the outskirts of Alor Setar in a place called Batu Lima near Simpang Empa, Alor Setar. The Geo coordinates of this place are – ( 6.0356 N, 100.3617 E )

This photo is shot within Bandaraya Alor Star area, near Lebuh Raya Utara Selatan (Alor Setar Utara Exit). Geo Coordinates : 6.1344N, 100.3897E

Photographs are shot using a tripod and combined using Hugin – an open source panorama maker application in Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon)