Sunday, December 10, 2006


I never knew that spheres were so much fun!

The site that I can't get enough of is cgsphere. The galleries are awesome!

The idea is you start with a very simple sphere scene and use your imagination.

Unfort. I'm nowhere near that level. I've still tinkering with cheetah-3d. Its very simple (and yet powerful). It has a gradual learning curve that keeps me motivated. A lot of people rave about Blender, but theres too many buttons for me to remember.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Sprites of yesteryear

Very interesting art. Richard Horsman has taken sprites from old games and converted them to 3D images. Cool.

Great article about what its like living in the valley during the web2.0 growth. I agree there is less money squandered on stupid ideas. Also the cost of development is a lot lower.

During the first boom-bust, startups were spending silly money of areons, party launches, clustered oracle servers, huge sun boxes and weblogic bea server-apps. With the maturity of Open Source, we have real stable frameworks and operating systems for free.

Communication is better now. IM is another cog in your communication rather than the exception. With better high-bandwidth penetration in the home, it means that everyone is contributing and producing content.

Fantastic! :)

Sunday, November 12, 2006


Interesting article at ibm developerworks about how developers become architects

Monday, October 30, 2006

Stores rave about web reviews

We got a mention in the chicago tribune about how stores love reviews.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Friday, October 13, 2006

Lunch with Eric

Some of us from powerreviews had a very pleasant lunch talking to Eric Miraglia from yahoo YUI team. We talked about the YUI library and cool things that can be done.

He posted his comments on his blog.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Monday, October 02, 2006

Mash up or shut up - Yahoo Hackday.

Yahoo opened their campus last weekend for their developer hackday. There were lots of workshops and talks and had a great time absorbing.

They really have some talented people working on api's that make the average developers life a lot easier.

Anyhoo.. I was the first to get registered and was given a whole bunch of cool swag. woohoo!

The offices are pretty cool and every hack need was taken care of.

They had Beck play and it was a fantastic concert. They truely are original both musically and in their performance. They also had some very superb puppets!

In fact the puppets themselves made a very funny yahoo video.

If you ever get a chance to go to one of these, I would recommend it. Great day.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Google development practices / Woz

Steve Yegge talks about how Agile Development isn't the silver bullet. He goes into how software development is done at google.

Went and saw Woz on his book signing tour. It's fascinating to hear him speak about the early days and how he really did push the boundaries of computers.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Supped-up Video iPod tomorrow?

Theres been lots of press about Apples presentation tomorrow.

Wired has aggregated the best of the mockups that are floating around.

My favourite is the iPod Chimera.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


I just saw Nabaztag on my surfing and I think it's quite cool. We have an ambient orb in the office but Nabaztag looks a lot more fun!

Flicker and YouTube links.

Monday, September 04, 2006

NYT article

The New York times has an article about consumer reviews where PowerReviews gets a mention.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Techcrunch interviews P.G.

Techcrunch interviews Paul Graham.

Noah takes a picture of himself every day for 6 years and stitches them into a movie. Mesmerizing.

Interesting picture of frozen cherry trees.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Peer Pressure

Nice like article from about reviews and peer pressure.

Of course.. being the best review service out there.. we get a mention! ;-)

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Customer satisfaction

It's very satisfying when our customers really love what we do!

Nathan Decker, Director of E-commerce,

"PowerReviews enabled one of our biggest coups to date. The implementation went smoothly, their team offered exceptional support, and the product itself far exceeded our expectations. Not only did we gain functionality on par or superior to the largest and most sophisticated eCommerce sites, we immediately differentiated our offering in the marketplace. In short, this company has it dialed. They are Web 2.0 personified. What exactly is Web 2.0 you ask? Who the hell knows, but PowerReviews has found a way to enable any website with robust, scalable, and fully featured reviews at no cost. As for me and my team, we are absolutely stoked."

Friday, August 18, 2006

Lessons from Kiko

Looks like Kiko the ajax web calendar is getting sold on ebay.

Theres a writeup of the why it failed by one of the founder.

Paul Graham seems to think that startups should stay out of Google's way.

I'm not sure I totally agree with that point of view. Theres been some reports that Googles other services (other than search) are not being as used as much as they hope.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Thursday, August 03, 2006


First noticable (4.4) earthquake in SF.

Heres the image from the USGS.

Unfortunately I was in milbrae and didn't feel a thing. Yeah.. I was still there at 8.00pm.. Phuu.. working at a startup

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Glass Curtain

Interesting article about googles new HQ and their views on space and interactions.

Video on youtube which takes the whole desktop metaphor to another plane.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Son of Man

Nice etching on a powerbook from the famous René Magritte painting.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Impossible is relative

When you think you have impossible problems.. think about this guy.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


Last weekend I went I saw Cars, the new Pixar movie. I loved it!

I have to saw that its right up there with the movies they produced.

I would however, recommend you view it as late in the evening as possible, as the afternoon shows will be filled with kids (they can be more 'expressive' than grown-ups...).

These films are really a class of there own. I read, that on their render farm, each frame took 17 hours to produce!

It also reminds me why I really don't like anything coming out of Dreamworks. Its ALL about the story. Animation is second.

Anyhoo.. I see that Apple sponsored the piston cup (from the movie).

Also some interesting facts about the movie.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Jonathan Schartz speaks

Its interesting to hear Jonathan talk on his blog about the use of product reviews:

Jonathan Schartz writes:
Which is why you'll see something very interesting next week start to appear on Sun's web pages and throughout our on-line store. You'll start to see product reviews written by users. You'll see user defined ratings, right on our products. Just like book or product reviews at Amazon. We're starting with just a few products, but it'll ultimately extend all the way up to our highest end enterprise offerings.

It's great to hear that corporations are willing to listen to their customers. There is great benefit in listening to the good and bad from your customers.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Site launched

Although we've got clients and actively developing in the background, we just launched our corporate site to give a lot more details of what we are about. Wohoo!

If you have any questions or interested in using our service, please let us know. We have operators standing by! :-)

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Tips to Start

Some good tips in starting a company. Part1, part2, part3.

Congrats to all at, we are 1 year today! :-)

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Plagiarism is the sincerest form of flattery

Our clients love our products. We GIVE them (for FREE!) a competitive edge in the hard world of ecommerce.

Steve Jobs has shown that innovation is the way to lead the market. Apple has consistently been the company that shows this industry the way to go. ie Vista sounds like an expensive knock-off.

I haven't had my coffee yet.. so please forgive the slight edge in my tone.. but today I've noticed that our competitor has managed to come up with a similar ideas that we have released a long time ago. I was responsibly for one of these pieces so I'm a little irked. Well I guess it will give me more material to blog about. :)

At powerreviews we are constantly thinking of how to make the review service the best if can be. Since we give our product away (our competitor charges a ridiculous amount) our interest is directly related with the interest of our clients. We drive traffic to our merchants site and we give away technology that they can't afford to create.

As our competitor charges a lot of money for review service.. its in their best interest that their clients do not write reviews. They already have the money. Every review costs them money. Their interest are not aligned.

We are in a brave new world.. its called Web2.0 :)

Friday, May 19, 2006


It's quite refreshing working in a startup. There's lots of freedom and initiative is often encouraged.

Case in point, my office buddy decide to do belgium waffles for everyone! No cheating with mix, real ingredients.
We had fruit, chocolate and several syrups. Superb!

I would like to see that at my old investment bank on Wall St. :-)

Nice article about people and their segways.

Thursday, May 18, 2006


Tags are a real big thing for web2.0. It's a simple/clear way of seeing what people think of a product. Its one of main features here at and our customers love it and see the benefit of it.

We've just created a press release about our TagSuggests (among other cool things). This is autocomplete (google-suggest functionality) for tag completion which yours truly battled with javascript/ajax.

Hopefully our fans will like it as much as I do.

New retail store on 5th.

I've been using my 12'' powerbook for the startup I've joined. It's such a pleasure to get off windows. :)

Here is an example why I like the mac. I recently wrote a little bash script that determined what files had been modified from our source code repository (by me), zipped them up , dated the file and scp'd it to my unix home directory on our development servers.

I've been thinking of even keeping a log of the work I do (daily) and including this on the zip.. Hmm.. maybe I can create a little shareware app. :-)

Every day this thing gets kicked off and I have my daily changes (remotely stored) just in case something bad happens.

I contemplated doing something like this for my fellow windows collegues, but what am I going to use? VB? or do I have to get them to instal perl on their boxes? No thankyou.

Theres talk about buying tools that keep 2 directory structures in sync, but it wouldn't maintain history, which is useful.

Anyhoo.. I've been doing a lot of the web development technologies (ajax/css) as well as backend java. Off the top of my head, tools that I have found invaluable (and which I've registered) are CCSEdit, Xyle, GraphicConverter and TextMate.

We use Intellij to do our java development, which although is a very good IDE takes a lot of resources and my 12'' is pushing it.

Apple's release of the reasonably priced MacBook has sparked an interest. It's something that will definately make my work day a lot smoother.

Apple is opening a new retail store in New York on my street! Well when I lived on the east coast a year ago.

It reminds me of that scifi film: Cube2-Hypercube. :)

Monday, May 01, 2006

The monster awakens

Just read in techcrunch that yahoo has launched Yahoo-Tech.

There going after CNET, but also offering product reviews which is in our playground. Hmm..

Sunday, April 30, 2006

A bicycle made for one.

Woo-hoo.. With raible always talking about how he rides to work on his bike i've splashed out on a very nice bike from rei.

My commute is around 10 miles, which may be a little far. I really need to shed some extra pounds I've gathered over the year and this may be just the ticket.

Hmm.. maybe I can throw some technology at it.. :-) I've been think of the Nuvi 360 for the car, but its probably an overkill for the bike. Anyone know of a nice wee GPS unit ?

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Tips for Productivity

Raible talks about how to be productive and happy at work.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Virtualization Software

Been a busy week. Apple announces that the macbooks can now boot windows xp with a piece of software called Boot Camp. They said they will be available in Leopard, the next version of macosx.

Also just read on eWeek about a company called Parallels which does this in a window. (no pun intented). Take a look at the screenshots or the video. Interesting..

Friday, March 31, 2006

Happy Birthday Apple! (30 tomorrow)

Bill Thompson a technology commentator, from the BBC argues "The hardware punks at Apple have changed the world more than the Sex Pistols"

Apple tomorrow will be 30 years old. Started in 1976 on April 1st in a garage, IMHO they have radically changed the whole computer industry for the better. Whether you use a Mac or not you can't help see how they have contributed to tech for the last 30 years.

Friday, March 24, 2006

TechTalks at Google

Google has very kindly posted their TechTalks on GoogleVideo. These are presentations by Googlers or guests on a wide range of subjects. I've just watched the Second Life video which I found fascinating.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

PowerReviews on CNN/Fortune

The startup I'm working for ( got a mention on cnn/fortune. Yeah!

For me, I make most of my buying decisions based on reviews. I want real testimony from people explaining how they use the product, what was good and what was bad. I then aggregate, take them with a pinch of salt and make an informed decision.

The article explains that our competitor charges as much as $8000 per month for the service. People have said our software is better and FREE. Yes... FREE! I guess they are after a different size of fish.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Monday, March 06, 2006

Oscar Night

Although I'm not a big fan of the Oscars, both Rachael and myself made the effort to dress up and went to see it at the Castro theater. She was Willy Wonka and I was an Oompa-Loompa. We actually WON(!) the costume contest and got a mention in the State Uni paper.

Pictures are here, here and here.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Out of Stealth

Well the startup that I've joined has come out the stealth-mode and announced whats its all about.

We want to be the source for product reviews. Its free and super easy for merchants to add product reviews to their sites without needing the big budgets of say amazon.

Please take a look.

Sunday, February 19, 2006

It doesn't offend me

Not sure why I find this interesting, but someone has put up pictures of what the've eaten at google. Looks yummy.
Interesting article about praise at google.

The Google Praise Scale:

  • Unequaled Brilliance
  • It’s kind of interesting
  • It seems sensible / reasonable
  • It will do until we can fix it
  • It doesn’t offend me
  • It’s not worth talking about
  • It’s a waste of time
  • Unacceptable Dreck
I generally don't get too excited about things (maybe its a British thing) and if asked for feedback will often say "Not bad". For people that don't really know me, this could be construed as a negative statement, but its really a compliment!.

I think in future, I may adopt the term used in the above article.. "It doesn't offend me" :P

Friday, February 10, 2006

Desktop Manager

Very cool opengl linux desktop manager (with video) called Compiz. Although I'm a fan of the cool effects on MacosX, I think this may get a little annoying after a while.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Using Map sites

Raible describes how to use the various maps on the web in your application.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Narnia Rap

A Saturday Night Live scketch.. from the East Coast comes SNL-Narnia-Rap. Here are the lyrics.

In response from the West Coast: narniarapbattle.

Since moving from the East Coast to the West Coast, I think I can relate to both. Funny :)

New Chapter

I've given my previous corporate environment to something that I believe will be fullfilling. Yesterday was my first day at a stealth startup called PowerReviews.

Paul Graham talks about How To Do What You Love.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Intel inside

I thought this was amusing.

From techdirt: "On the very day the company officially announced its first Intel-based product, Apple's stock price closed at $80.86."

Don't understand? 8086 was one of the first intel chips in PC's. :-)

Also looks like Windows-XP won't be running on the terribly named MacBook.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Real Job

Robert C May writes why he "Quit Entrepreneurship and Got a Real Job".

Also how "Entrepreneurship Can Ruin Your Life" . A story about a couple's decision to open a nice coffee shop in NYC didn't quite turn out.

Thursday, January 05, 2006


Interesting new device called satuGo. Combine a bouncy ball with a camera and you have the potential of some very interesting pictures.

Macworld next week.

My significant other is a real corker. She bought me the best gift ever! :)

I'm not sure if your aware, but its Macworld next week.

I get deliriously (some call it ridiculously) fanatical of all things Apple and read every site that provides real-time updates of Steve Jobs keynote.

So what does she go and do? She gets me (among other things) Macworld tickets for the User Conference; which involves the Steve Jobs Keynote!

Woo-Hoo!! :)

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Plains, Trains and Buses.

I've recently returned from my xmas trip to all families concerned and I'm exhausted.

This meant flying on xmas eve from San Francisco to Coventry (via London) UK to spend a few days there.

On arriving in the UK and finding out my brother's car had broken down trying to pick us up from the airport, ventured to use public transport to get home. Getting a car on xmas eve is crazy, so we put on best foot forward.

The whole journey to get from Heathrow to Coventry took 5 hours! It involved 2 trains, 2 tubes (London underground) and a bus that made all local stops. :( Distance was around 120 miles.

Although we don't have Thanksgiving in the UK, it reminded us both of the very funny movie: Planes, Trains & Automobiles.

Anyway after a few days we headed back to the US. We stopped off in Pennsylvania for a few days to say hello to the in-laws. Most of this occurred using connecting flights, which was a pain.

I vowed not to use connecting flights in the future (we'll see). It just wastes huge sums of time and means the plane landing more often (which I am not fond off).

Then finally back to Bay Area to nice 55F weather.. arrrhh..

It's good to be back.