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Archive for the ‘Tech Talk’ Category

Bloggers Paradox : Version 2010

Every so often I get reminded of the importance of keeping my online persona separate from my real life person. And its becoming increasingly harder in this highly social-media-obsessed age where many people simply do not understand this concept. For them, facebook and twitter is synonymous with other normal social activities like txting your mates. But a few years or more ago, when terminology such as “tweeting” were not mainstream nor common place, it was actually quite the norm for us online bloggers and vloggers to keep a bit of a “low profile” on our online activities in our “real life”. Of course we interacted with fellow bloggers/vloggers/tweeters in the blogosphere but when it came to friends or colleagues from real life, it was as if our online persona’s did not exist. Like we had secret identities. Hence the choice of username was quite important as it was a representation of one’s identity. (Facebook had to go and fubar that idea out the window with their standard of using your real first and last name in your profile.. now ppl even sign up to twitter with their real names. Fools.)

I remember the days of regularly tweeting in secret, knowing that most people around me I interacted with on a regular basis had no idea about this cool little thing called twitter (and before that, it was blogging) which I used to blip (or blog) out random brain farts about anything and everything in my life to strangers-yet-somehow-friends from all over the world, and gain insight in return as I tuned in to their thoughts. It was refreshing. There was a liberating level of honesty gained by anonymity. I’m not talking honesty as in, here’s my address, my personal details, my bank details etc. But honesty in thought and emotion. What I “really” thought about something and how I felt personally. Sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly in a way that people rarely seem to share about in real life (or if they do, they do so foolishly – lamebook is a perfect exhibition of that). Particularly when it comes to the bad and the ugly. πŸ˜‰

So before I get too carried away with nostalgia, where am I going with all this? Is this about the blogger’s paradox once again? I have visited this issue over and over again.. way back in 2003 and 2004 I blogged about this paradox. It hasn’t really been too much an issue the past few years, but maybe I have been lulled into a sense false security. I am aware that I have broken my own cardinal rule left, right and center. (This being, never to share anything identified by my username with people I meet in real life.) And with everyone around me being blatantly open about their online presences, it’s quite hard to maintain that kind of discipline. It’s all too tempting to want to share my creations, be it video or text, with people I meet IRL. Afterall, I am quite proud of some of them. But I am glad that I have held back sometimes. And I am reminded again of the importance in holding back, even when you feel that you trust a person, you never know. Because this is what I am discovering currently in a certain situation with a certain friend. I thought this person was trustworthy but now I am discovering she is not quite as.. reliable a friend.. as I thought. And I am quite glad I did not share my “online persona” with her. I am glad I have kept that line between online and offline. Yes it’s more work and maintenance, but I think its worth it and I think, for now, I need to remain disciplined.

(Edit: I just realised my last blog post was in January. Really.. how does 6 months go by just like that..)

more » Posted on Monday, June 14th, 2010 | 9 Comments »


Hm.. I really need to update this blog more often than the once-every-one-or-two-months that’s currently happening! I mean seriously, you know you’re a lazy blogger when your blogging software gets updated more frequently than your blog posts.

So I was playing with my blog recently, and during some updates I decided to have a play with the Last.Fm Records WordPress widget. I didn’t like how it was displaying the recent tracks album art (bit buggy too).. and seeing as it was written using jQuery (my hands-down fave javascript library), I customised it with a bit of css & js magic to fit better with my blog style. I also added a bit of extra functionality to display the song title/artist info as text (on mouseover). Quite happy with the results now (its the box in the right side bar called “Kazzart Tunes In”). Also I’m quite happy with the fact that doing this sort of thing is now relatively easy for me, due to the amount of experience I’m getting at work. I’m rather enjoying creating cool jquery animations and impressing account managers, designers and flash developers alike. πŸ™‚

So.. enough about work/tech talk. It’s been taking over more and more of my life ever since my recent-ish move in the past few months onto this current client account (which will remain nameless). I am enjoying the work though, which is interesting, creative and challenging (all must-have’s for me to not get bored at work), so I guess I can’t complain too much.

In other news.. got back recently from an amazing week in Sardegna, Italia. It is so amazingly beautiful there and the weather was perfect every single day – blue skies, sunshine and a perfect low 30’s deg C. I am made for the heat. Every day was spent in the sun, either relaxing in the Mediterranean sea or by the enormous pool of our apartment residence. I really wish I were back there right now. Le sigh.

More pics and a holiday vlog to come soon!

What else.. well, I’m still dancing both cuban salsa and zouk lambada. I love both. I’m more experienced with salsa – now I can dance that quite confidently with any partner in the club now, or participate in a rueda de casino. Gone are the days of nervous anxiety, fear of screwing up the steps or worrying about not being able to “follow his lead”. I still screw up sometimes of course, but I recover much better as my sense of the clave “timing” is much more instinctive and natural. I even get son timing. (This is where being a musician becomes an advantage πŸ˜‰ ) Lambada however is not quite at the stage of being able to confidently follow the lead of a partner. However I don’t have the “hang ups” I used to have when I first started salsa. I also have yet to try a proper night out dancing in a lambada club. Not just “have a couple dances after class”. I’m going to try this tomorrow at the London Dance Congress! Going to do the workshops and then go to the party night afterwards. Should be fun!

On the music front.. it’s been a bit quiet, other than jamming with the trumpet player in the London street piano’s festival. However this morning I just managed to arrange a date The Sheridan Trio’s first gig for summer 09 – on Saturday 15 August! I’m really looking forward to it – I really enjoy playing with our trio and it’s been too long…

Another new thing is that I’ve recently completed a 10 week italian language course! (Beginner Plus level). I’ve signed on for the next level (elementary) and classes start next week. It’s tough learning italian, and I don’t practice nearly enough. But I am learning loads, and hopefully will get to a stage where I can start having conversations with the boyf in italian. Not quite there yet!

Well, that’s the latest on the Kazzart news front. Ciao e ci vediamo presto. πŸ™‚

Now playing: Milk & Honey – Didi

more » Posted on Friday, July 17th, 2009 | 5 Comments »


Don’t ask me why I decided on that title for this post. It just sprung up in my brain and wouldn’t leave. Anyway.. it’s been a while since I’ve blogged and I don’t want this blog to completely die, having been around for all of 6 years, 11 months, 3 weeks and 3 days (you won’t believe how long it took me to figure that out).

So I’ve recently been trying to resurrect some of my online presences. Since I’m just not going to be able to vlog very regularly (it’s just too time-consuming!), I’ll have to fall back to the good ol mediums of text and image. I’ve even resurrected Kazzart Cam! Albeit using a new web 2.0 service called Daily Booth. The whole concept suits me to a tee (once they get their rss feed fixed of course) afterall, it’s exactly what I used to do with my webcam.. except manually.. without all this new-fangled web 2.0 rss, social networking, technological flash webcam schtuff. πŸ™‚

I recently had a look at my blog as it was “back in the day” using this really cool tool on Internet Archive called The Wayback Machine. Basically it is an archive of the internet! From as far back as 1996! Of course it doesn’t contain *everything* but there is a lot there.. and I found a few archived versions of kazzart.com from 2003 to 2005. Was rather amusing to take a glimpse back in time.. *sighs*

I’d forgotten what I used to do with my blog.. how on top of my blog entries, I also kept this “Meme” sidebar regularly updated (manually!) – it contained a latest snapshot from my webcam that I kept at work, my current mood, a timestamp, what I was listening to, what I was reading, what I was eating & drinking, what I was wearing, what I was doing, what I was thinking, and upcoming tasks to do! I also had a separate box for my current “wishlist” of shopping items, and another for upcoming events! Basically, it was pretty much Facebook, Twitter & DailyBooth rolled into one… manually kept up-to-date. Gee it’s no wonder I’ve “hit the ground running” so to speak.. and taken to the sites mentioned above like a fish to water. It’s exactly what I used to do.. but made easier! *ruminates over the memories*

I have also recently found my webcam archives which I thought I’d lost! I’ll add those pages to this website at some point too. But that might take a while coz I’d created them using tables for the layout… *eek*! Yeh.. I’m so glad I’ve moved on from those dark days…

more » Posted on Monday, February 16th, 2009 | 3 Comments »


Look what google alerts fetched me today. My very own street art on the streets of Palermo, Italy. πŸ™‚


Photo taken by Micheleska.

more » Posted on Wednesday, November 19th, 2008 | No Comments »

I’m in the world’s first internet balloon race! Whee!

I’ve decided to participate in the world’s first internet balloon race! I’ve entered this website to the list of sites participating in the balloon race, and I also have my very own Racoon (closest thing to a cat) balloon. πŸ™‚ So to all my readers.. please.. help give my balloon a boost in the race. I’m not too sure how its gonna work yet, but I think it will have something to do with the widget below:

The race starts at midday on Monday June 23rd, 2008 and ends at midday on June 30th, 2008. So c’mon guys… show us some love! πŸ™‚

more » Posted on Thursday, June 19th, 2008 | 6 Comments »

Kazzart.Com Rebirth

So here it is. My first new post with my new blog software WordPress on my newly redesigned website, hosted on a new server, using my new domain name Kazzart.Net! πŸ™‚ Only managed to get the basics up so far – mainly blog, about page and newly installed and up-to-date gallery (albeit only with basic layout). W00t! It’s certainly taken me a LONG time to get this happening.. moving servers is not easy, especially with the new demanding job and part time music college sucking up all my time. But here it is. It’s only upwards from here.

more » Posted on Tuesday, November 13th, 2007 | 4 Comments »


Last night I went to my first breaking (otherwise known as “breakdancing”) class! It was totally AWESOME! Seriously I had so much fun, I haven’t been this excited about a new thing since.. I tried surfing for the first time a few years ago. I think I’m addicted and I’m definitely going back next week. As much pain as I am in today (and boy is my body in pain.. like.. everywhere) I really loved it! As this was my first lesson, I learnt the foundations – the basic Toprock, Uprock and 6-Step. Very cool stuff. πŸ™‚

However my body is definitely paying for it today. See, I had also attended a 1 hour pilates class just before the 1.5 hours breaking class. So now my quads, hammies, calves, butt, arms, shoulders, back, neck, wrists, abs.. yeh pretty much everywhere.. are feeling reeeally sore. I need a massage. :/


Heehee.. spending way too much time creating new Meez. I even have one of me breaking! Lol! NB. Click on each picture to get the full size animated version!

more » Posted on Thursday, August 16th, 2007 | 4 Comments »

And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going

I watched DreamGirls on the weekend. I’m now totally obsessed with the song “And I’m Telling You I’m Not Going”. There seems to be much debate about who sings the better version of this song. I’ve scoured YouTube looking for all versions, including the most recent sung by Jennifer Hudson (from Dreamgirls), original Broadway version by Jennifer Holliday, that performance by 11 year old Bianca Ryan, a cover by Whitney Houston, and even covers by filo divas like Regine.

After some pondering, I’ve decided the original is the best.. there is just no comparison to the amount of soul, raw emotion and sheer power Jennifer Holliday puts into this song. It’s not that pretty to look at (her face is a bit scary sometimes!), and it’s not a nice “polished” song, but I think that’s how it’s supposed to be, and it’s what makes this song so powerful. I can’t stop watching this clip (below) – makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up every time! I wish I could have even just 50% of the voice this woman has. *sigh* She is probably the most powerful belter I’ve ever heard. And then some!

NB: Song begins from about 3:30mins.

Comments Fixed

Btw I’ve fixed the comments. Somehow the script permission got changed. Strange coz I never touched it. Anyway it’s working now.. so comment away. Not that anyone reads this anymore since I’ve been so lazy with this site lately. Been distracted by other things is my excuse. But I really need to overhaul this site at some point.. and do that dreaded move to the new server.

more » Posted on Monday, January 29th, 2007 | 4 Comments »

Italy Trip 2006 : Part 2

And the saga continues with Part 2 – arrival in Milano! Enjoy. πŸ™‚


So I haven’t really blogged any real updates in a while. Life has been busily chugging along. The biggest news of the moment (that I think I only hinted at before) is that I’ve resigned my current job (about 2 weeks ago) because I had a job offer with a very cool creative digital agency. Yep, I finally got that greatly pursued job at a digital agency, after many interviews (and many knock-backs) for many months, at many different digital agencies. For those who have no clue what on earth a digital agency is, and what the fuss is about. Here’s a quoted explanation from the Brand Republic website, which is kinda a news and information hub in the digital agency industry:

“Before defining what a new-media [or creative digital / interactive media] agency is, you really need to distinguish between agency and consultancy. At its most basic, you could say that an agency does things for you Γ‚β€” such as build you a website according to your specifications Γ‚β€” while a consultancy advises you on the right way to go about something, ie whether you should have a website in the first place. A good analogy comes from the analogue world, where the advertising agency occupies the space between the clientÂ’s business and the clientÂ’s consumers. Selling superior knowledge of the consumer, the client and the immediate competitive environment in which they exist, an ad agency aims to deliver appropriate messaging through appropriate channels. The new-media marketplace has bred a new business model. It is a model that is essentially a fusion between consultancy services, marketing services and production output. ….[New-media agencies] undertake to facilitate and mediate the entire business process, from the conception of an idea or product, to the launch of a digital property (which may be a website) and its appropriate support services. ….There are a myriad of specialisms that the new-media consultancies must embrace and each requires its own set of skills, from business consulting and database management, through to building online brands and website construction.”

So hopefully that is an accurate description of the industry I’m entering into. It is a highly sort after industry for web designers & developers because the type of work is very client project based and highly creative (since we are usually dealing with brands and advertising in the online world). And the environment at these type of companies is always fun, casual, highly energetic and close-knit (totally different from the banking industry, which is usually quite boring for a designer/developer, tho you do get paid more in banking). But there are usually heaps of cool perks like more holidays (eg 24 days), private health insurance, annual bonuses – some agencies I’ve seen do things like company breakfasts or lunches.. free donuts.. massages.. onsite gym.. onsite xbox 360 or pool table or similar fun activity.. onsite subsidised bar.. day off for your birthday.. etc. But they are also usually fairly demanding jobs because they deal with clients.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to this new role – hopefully it’ll be good and I’ll fit in well with the company (it’s a really really small company of only about 13 people.. so far)! It’s kinda a senior web developer role in asp.Net (as well as some front end stuff) – so it’s not a front-end-only role which I’d been going for in all my other interviews. I’m a bit nervous about it because asp.Net is not my strongest skill and I’m not that experienced in it. The interview was kinda funny actually, I only had one interview with them, which kinda went like:

Me: “Honestly, I’m not sure if my asp.Net skills are good enough for this role”

CEO: “Well I think they are”

Me: “Oh.. er ok then”

They are planning on expanding with more permanent staff, and less contractors – so hopefully they’ll bring in more (better) asp.Net developers than me, so I can perhaps concentrate on more front-end stuff.. we’ll see how things go. (Strangely they don’t have a dedicated front-end developers team like all the other agencies seem to – the designer also does the html/css which is rare I’ve found). Anyway I will also be able to have client interaction, which is a big bonus for me because I want to gain experience in that side of things. Perhaps even move to that side, away from technical. We’ll see if I’m good at it first! The only down point is that they’re not located in London.. they are down in Edenbridge, just outside the M25 – which is like, in Kent!!! From Croydon, its not too bad, only abt 1/2 hour train (with only 2 trains an hour). But to get to central london takes full hour train journey.. ouch. Oh well, I think it’s worth it with higher salary, more perks/holidays and less working hours!! (9 – 5:30pm.. woohoo!)

Ok enough about work! Ooh I went shopping on the weekend. I pretty much spent my entire winter clothes budget on a beeeeautiful cream autumn/winter coat from Mango and 3 autumn/winter skirts from Topshop. Pics to come. πŸ™‚

My official statement on MySpace

In response to the exploded phenomenon of myspace – with every pop artist, band, model, actress, actor, man, woman, child and their dog now having a myspace page:

“Myspace sucks. From a web developers viewpoint (and myspace member since early 2004) myspace is a poorly designed site (who on earth came up with their page designs??) with little functional benefit and runs at a snails pace. It’s full of noobs who Γ‚β€œpimp” their profile pages with extremely poorly designed hacked code that will crash ones browser at any given time (way too much power in the wrong hands). ItÂ’s a pure waste of web space and an eye sore to look at most of the time. If you want a blog, use blogger or other similar sites. If you want a web site, make your own (it’s really not that hard). If you want a photo gallery, use Flickr. If you want a video host, use Youtube. The community thing doesnÂ’t work either – everyone has about a 1000 friends, most of whom are scanity clad members of the opposite sex. So in summary.. the functionality sucks, the design sucks (both profile and admin pages), and the community sucks. Did I leave anything out?”

TheWineKone sums it up nicely in this amusing video blog. πŸ˜€

Current listening :: “Milestones” – Miles Davis

more » Posted on Monday, October 16th, 2006 | 3 Comments »

WOW players must watch this!

OMG this south park episode is soooooooo hilarious. LMAO. It pwns big time. Anybody who plays WoW must watch it! Quickly, before it gets taken down!! Hahehaheheh.

more » Posted on Sunday, October 8th, 2006 | 3 Comments »