Monday, December 29, 2008

Mostly done with shutter speed 5 seconds and various aperture settings. Tripod and self-timer in all shots.


The Putra Mosque




Views of the lake from the top of the Souq



Neon flower


Seri Wawasan Bridge


Then 12am came and we were shoo'd by the security guards... I think next time we'll shoot the Ministry of Finance and the Palace of Justice...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Photoshoot in Lumut and Pangkor

 Just sharing some photos taken while our research group was in Lumut and Pangkor for a workshop.

The ticket counter was closed because we stopped by the jetty at night. I saw the shadow cast on the door so I decided it'd be cool to take a photo of it.


The hotel pool was very calm at night and the reflection of the things around the pool was almost perfect. I couldn't resist having a photo taken of the duality of reflections.


There is some sort of old metal windmill / wind turbine by the beach and it was creaking with the wind... With the nice weather, sky, clouds and tall grass, who wouldn't want to preserve this moment in photo?


An old ruin of a Dutch fort somewhere on the Island of Pangkor. There are village houses around it. The size of the ruin is not that much bigger than a village house really.


Enjoying the sunset at the beach in Pangkor Island.


As I am in all them, obviously I wasn't the one who took these photos. All credits go to Baharin, who is an awesome labmate and an aspiring photographer.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Kitty's offspring

Find Me


See if you can recognize me in this photo taken nine years ago back when I was in high school. People who have known and met me in real life since way back are disqualified.

Also, do you see anyone else you know here? Just trying to see if this indeed is a small world after all.

Kopi + Mamak fried noodles

No idea why it's a copypasta when almost nothing is copy-pasted because whatever we wrote, we wrote ourselves... anyway I've been tagged outside the Xangarealm for this one. Yeah, nobody has tagged me on Xanga yet, or at least I did not notice I was tagged even when I was. Guess that means I won't be sick when there's an epidemic going around...

Anyways, 16 random stuff eh. Lessee...

1. I am an unofficial traditional martial arts instructor at an overseas preparatory college in Shah Alam, Malaysia. I go there whenever I can, mostly Monday nights and Friday nights.

2. I have quite a large family. My dad's the 5th of 12 and my mom's the 8th of 9. I am the 1st of 9. All my uncles and aunts on both sides are married and have children, except one aunt on my mom's side who has down syndrome. I have close to 100 first cousins. Maybe more. I lost track.

3. I love photoshopping even if I'm not good at it. Yet. I'm watching online tutorials from Photoshop User TV. They're funnily professional about giving online tutorials. It's free, so I have no complaints.

4. I have the same online id for all my online stuff: Xanga, Blogspot, Wordpress, Windows Live, AIM, Gtalk, MySpace, and Skype. Except Yahoo!, because I lost my password for that one and I had to create a new one that's different.

5. I love taking macro shots, if any of you haven't known that yet.

6. When I was in primary school, I secretly wanted to be fat. This was because I was always the smallest person in school and I wanted to be bigger (at least bigger than those kids who always bullied me for my size).

7. I like to drink iced coffee (Nescafe) and iced chocolate milk (Milo) together but separately. That is, the two drinks are not mixed, but I sip on both at the same time so that both sides of my tongue gets to taste different drinks. My friends got used to seeing my order of drinks already. One mamak restaurant already knows me by it. I just sit down and the waiter would just ask me "Nescafe ais milo ais?" What a way to be known for.

8. I actually enjoy using Matlab and I wish that my computer is fast enough for all the stuff I have to do on Matlab.

9. Most of the clothes I have are either black or blue. Guess what my favorite color is.

10. When I was younger my parents liked to bring me to buffet lunches and dinners because they know I'll eat more than their money's worth.

11. I can't take notes while listening to lectures. So what I did in college was I listened intently to the lecturer and took photos of the blackboard whenever necessary. Yeah. I didn't do it discretely either, I had a big old camera that was noisy and I sat in the front row so everybody noticed what I was doing, but since I did it everyday anyways everyone got used to it. The end of the semester, the lecturer said I was a 'genius' for having done what I did all semester. He even bumped up my final grades in the end, haha.This was math class, by the way.

12. I used to memorize all the first generation Pokemons' names and attributes.

13. I am mildly phobic about cockroaches and rollercoasters.

14. The first manual transmission vehicle I ever drove was a 1995 Nissan Serena.

15. I once had a nosebleed after I fell asleep on the floor. I woke up with my face in a small pool of blood, felt dizzy and thought I was dead. That was the one and only time I ever had a nosebleed.

16. I once had a rabbit who couldn't stop reproducing, we gave away a lot of baby rabbits to friends, neighbors and families. One day the rabbits were gone. They actually ended up in the rabbit soup we had for dinner that night. I did not know this until much much later. I was 6 going on 7 at the time.

There you go. As for the title of this post, I just refuse to be a conformist and use copypasta, so I changed it to a typical mamak stall order of coffee and fried noodles.

And I'm tagging a number of people in usertags. Sorry if you were already tagged and have done this before.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


We've never had a proper photo together...

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Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Langkah bendul

"Langkah bendul" is a Malay term for the act of a person getting married before their older sibling(s). In the case of last weekend's wedding, this is true for both the bride and the groom - Kamilah is the third in our family, and Shazni is the second, and both are the first in their siblings to get hitched.

King and Queen for a day

In Malay culture, the groom and the bride are the king and queen for the day, and thus the wedding regalia is derived from the royal regalia of Malay kings and queen. The wedding altar, known as 'pelamin', is also derived from the royal thrones of Malay royalties.

The photo above is of my sister Kamilah and her groom Shazni. Behind them, hidden from view is the 'pelamin', which was set up in the living room of our house in Seremban.

Milah and Shazni

Modern Malay weddings also have certain western cultural elements incorporated, such as the cutting of the wedding cake.

Guest receptionist

My duty for the wedding day is mostly to (along with my father) greet and receive guests as they come. In Malaysia, when guests shake hands with the hosts, a 'salam keruk' is done. This is just like a 'spit-shake', only in place of the spit is some amount of money - usually a significant amount, something in the range of ten ringgits to fifty ringgits, sometimes more, depending on the generosity of the guests. For much larger amounts, the money is usually put in a special envelope and given to the host family later. In our case, the largest amount received was eight hundred ringgits in a single unsigned envelope.

Greeting the grandfather in-law

Traditional Malay weddings are done in multiple ceremonies, the actual wedding receptions being two of them. The one we had last Sunday was the one hosted by the bride's family (our family) and all the guests were invited by the family of the bride. Customarily this is when the groom gets to meet most of the extended family members of his bride, and he gets introduced to every single family member that was present. In Malay culture, when someone shakes the hand of an older, more respected person, that someone has to use both hands and kiss the the palm of the respected person. In the photo above, the groom (Shazni) is introduced to my grandfather, and so he kisses my grandfather's palm as a sign of respect. Also, in Malay culture, the kiss is not done using the upper and lower lips, but by the bottom part of the nose and the upper part of the upper lip.

Langkah bendul gifts

When a person does a 'langkah bendul', he or she is required to present gifts to his or her older siblings who are unmarried, as a sign of respect, and according to some, as consolation or token of appreciation for allowing him/her to 'overstep' them in getting married. In the photo above, Kamilah and Shazni present gifts to me and my sister Una (who is currently doing a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Miyazaki, Japan).

Abu eating pudding

I just think this photo is cute. My youngest brother Abu, eating a mixed fruit pudding.

Wedding gifts

Kamilah and Shazni with their heap of wedding gifts. They're mostly kitchen appliances and tablewares.

Washing the belanga Washing the wok

After the groom's family has left the bride's house, the groom is required to stay behind to help with the cleaning. In some parts of Malaysia, the groom (sometimes with the help of the bride) has to wash and clean the biggest, largest, dirtiest pots and woks. I have heard from some people that in addition to cleaning the filthiest pots and woks, the groom is also splashed with soapy water, but we did not observe this.

The next step would be the wedding reception at the groom's house, called the 'majlis menyambut menantu' (welcoming the new daughter in-law ceremony). The reception at Shazni's house will be done this coming Saturday, so I'll update later after the event so I can accompany the explanations with photos. In the meantime, I welcome any comments or questions about the wedding or Malay weddings in general.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Chasing dragonflies

I took a stroll around the lake near the engineering building and saw a couple of dragonflies hovering above the grass... luckily I have a camera on hand so here you go... more pictures of bugs... this time, dragonflies.

So it started out with noticing a dragonfly perched on a blade of grass... (see below)


So I went in closer for a better shot...




This was as close as I could get before it flew away. Next thing I knew there were a couple of these beautiful creatures hovering around me. I guess they got accustomed to my presence already.


A shot of another dragonfly, I think I used the camera's flash and -2 ev for this one.


Screwed around some more with the camera's settings for this shot. I like how the colors came out.


There were countless failed attempts at snapping these insects in flight, the most you would ever be able to see is a brown blur in the middle of the photo, so I'm not including those. If only I have in my arsenal a camera fast enough to capture these flying arthropods in flight...

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Resolutions progress

Back in early January I made some resolutions, as did most people everywhere that time of the year.

So far only one is achieved. I am in graduate school doing a master's degree, albeit by research and thesis and not coursework.

The third one seems unfeasible by now. The fourth one is partially achieved... the first one is not out of reach yet but I haven't made significant number of steps in that direction.

So this is my latest resolution. To resolve to fulfill at least the first and fourth resolution (since I think the third one is unfeasible, financially at least).

Some ways to achieve this:

1. Go swimming in the pool in the mornings. Yes I the apartment I live at has a nice big swimming pool. Only dipped in there 3 times if I could remember. Very underutilized.

2. Regular evening jogs. Next to the engineering building at the university is a lake with a jogging track around it. Less than half a minute away from my office. I can actuall see it out the window. I've only jogged there once. Again, very underutilized.

3. Reduce the consumption of rice. This I have done with considerable success. I eat much less rice these days, and I don't seem to crave for it too much either. Thank you 4.5 years in the States.

4. Regular workout sessions, either in the morning or evening. There's a gym near the university that charges only RM2 per entry (that's USD0.61, $0.84 Singaporean). Very cheap. I should utilize this to attempt that 'six pack abs in six months' challenge (yeah right).

5. Martial arts training twice weekly. I have been doing this regularly. If only the training place is much closer to where I live...

Now, on to the first step. That is, to believe I can do all this. I CAN.


I went to help a few of the ladies in our martial arts team with their training the other afternoon after some random photosnaps, so I had to put down my camera and all my other stuff underneath a nearby tree (along with other people's stuff) so I could move freely without hindrance.

A couple of kicks and swipes and punches and grapples later we decided to call it a day and picked our stuff up from underneath the tree. I got my camera back and this is what I found amongst all the other photos in the camera:


Made my day.

Flora and bugs of Cameron Highlands

Almost exactly a month ago I went up the mountains with a couple of academicians from the National University of Malaysia for a Seminar on Engineering Mathematics. Naturally they spend most of the time either working on their papers or sleeping, and since I am not geek-blooded (at least not entirely) I decided to take some break from my working on a time series segmentation algorithms Powerpoint slide presentation and walked around Strawberry Park Resort for some nature-y (diction by Tryna) photosnaps... this time, more flowers than bugs, but there are bugs nonetheless.

I might be a nature-y kind of guy, but I confess: I know almost zilch of the names of flowers and bugs, so much help is needed on the identification of these wonderful flora and arthropods.

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A yellow orchid-type flower with some highland dew on the petals. I like this one especially because of the dewdrops.

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A blue moth-type insect on a tea leaf. This was taken at a tea plantation. Cameron Highlands is famous for its tea and tea plantations.

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A bug on a sunflower.

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An ant on a sunflower next to the sunflower in the above photo.

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I chased this ant around with my camera before I get a good shot of it. There are a couple more shots of this ant but they're not in focus of the ant because of the lack of manual focus in a point-and-shoot.

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Some kind of purple flower thingy.

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Reminded me of dandelions in the U.S.

Spider on web

I was taking the photo above this one when I saw something floating in the air. It was a spider on its web, very small and almost invisible. Taking this shot was almost impossible because the camera kept focusing on the background. But at last it managed to focus on the spider so I'm happy.

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The spider then noticed me I guess so it ran away, but not before I managed to get one more shot. Notice the fine spider silk attached to the tip of the grass seed.

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Some fern leaves. I love the pattern I see in this photo, reminded me of Maths and Geometry.

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Some kind of flower in a pot. I'd say it's a relative of the bougainvillea, but I might be totally wrong.

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The same flower viewed from the top. I love the symmetry that I saw when I looked at the flower from above.

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Purple flower buds. I got some shots of fully-bloomed ones but they aren't good... I did not key in the proper settings on the camera.

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Some yellow flower thingie (I sound like a bimbo now. darn.)

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Reminded me of a durian. These are really small, I found them around a small man-made pond.

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A gigantic pink hibiscus. Almost the size of my face.

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A... pink chrysanthemum-type flower thingie? I need lessons.

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No idea what this is but I thought it looked cool so I snapped a photo of it.


Ok so I've been doing a lot of photo posts. Hope you aren't sick of them yet 'coz there might be more coming.

I'll do some writing next, for a break. Maybe for one or two posts at least.

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