Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Food: Grilled Salmon Cajun Style @ Fish & Co., Pavilion

If you're working near Pavilion and its vicinity, you should probably pay a visit to Fish & Co. for its weekday lunch set. The restaurant is secluded, hidden at the corner of level 4 of Pavilion but perhaps if you're craving for some seafood satisfaction, this will be worth a visit.

I had the opportunity to try out the Grilled Salmon Cajun Style. Honestly, you can't go wrong with salmon otherwise that's a big problem. Fish & Co's grilled salmon is well-marinated and cooked to perfection - can taste that the salmon is fresh. However, the sides are rather disappointing, bland french fries and the vegetables are too raw for my liking. Overall, I think it's an OK dish, but honestly I expected better from Fish & Co. I got a feeling I would like the Arctic Fish & Chips better though.

This outlet is hugeeee, should have no problems accommodating hundreds of people (yes, hundreds! this place is seriously hugeeee). Also think it's a great venue for parties because of the huge space, be it for young children or adults.

I always give extra points for cool serviettes. 

Fish & Co.
Lot No. C4.02.00,
Level 4, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur,
168 Jalan Bukit Bintang,
55100 Kuala Lumpur.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Review: Mi Redmi 2 Enhanced 2GB RAM 16GB Malaysia (IN-DEPTH Review)

I find it quite tricky to review something on the Internet after using only for a few times or a few days. Thus, I've always put it as first impression. When I got my current phone, Mi Redmi 2 Enhanced about 3 months ago, I published a first impression review which you can read here.

In the last few weeks, I have noted the requests for a second review since I've used it for awhile. So I thought I'll share what I think about the phone now, after about 3 months of using it on a daily basis. Do take note that I am basing this review with my personal usage, which I will explain below (hopefully in greater detail for you to understand) and also from my experience with using my previous phone, the Motorola Moto G.

Just a note: I am using two sims on the phone - Maxis on Sim1 and Hotlink on Sim2.

The battery life is not too impressive for me. On an average day where I leave my phone at the office table (idle mode) but allow the wifi to be switched on, it can last about 6-8 hours. Battery drains even faster with data switched on, needless to say. I was expecting more since the battery capacity is OK. I'm pretty sure I played around with the right settings. I have put it to the lowest brightest

Overall, quite pleasant and can do a lot of customisation. One thing I really love is Mi's permissions settings, which is excellent although I didn't know a lot about it at first. It's a little tricky. I had some difficulty getting push notifications from apps but as I learn a little bit more about MIUI, I learn that you can actually do a lot of customisation for the permission settings for apps.

There is one thing that irks me though and it's enough for me to remember when writing this review - I haven't manage to find a way where I can immediately copy paste a telephone number straight into the textbox. There is actually no way to do so, and that is just plain stupid. The only thing I can do is to actually simply press a number, then only the textbox will appear. Then I will have paste the number in the textbox, erase the number I pressed for 'fun'. Such tedious work.

Coming from using Motorola Moto G, I have to the MIUI is still not very good at RAM management. Sometimes, I only have 100MB free out of 2GB even after I killed all apps by clearing cache. That's utterly poor. To resolve this, I have to restart my phone and then I could get back about 1GB free.

I did experience some lag once or twice when I watched videos on Youtube. Not sure how did that happened. I mentioned that I played Injustice: Gods Among Us in my first review and that it was without any apparent lag. True, most of the time when I play the game, I did not experience any lag. However, like Youtube, I have experienced lag once or twice.

I use Waze quite often (at least 2-3 times a week) and found that sometimes the phone has problems with detecting location. Usually this is solved by restarting the phone. Not sure what's the problem though.

Unfortunately, I do not use the front camera enough except for selfies, which I do only once in awhile. But here are some pictures from the rear camera:

It's OK for me but I really don't use the phone's camera often coz I use my Olympus camera more often. If I do use the phone's camera, I interchangeably use the default camera app and LINE camera (known as aillis now).

I use my phone mostly for social stuffs (yeah, the usual Facebook-ing and stuff) and it's good so far. And for the money I paid (RM459), it's kinda worth it for a phone that I can use everyday, almost without any regular problems. I'm still looking forward to the day when I don't have to charge my phone at least once everyday.

Think I left out something in the review? Let me know in the comments below :)

Monday, August 31, 2015

Selamat Hari Merdeka

Your Facebook newsfeed was probably flooded with tonnes of news and posts that are in yellow in the last 3 days whether or not you were supportive of the Bersih 4 rally.

When Bersih 3 was held three years ago, I was sitting at home keeping up with news and updates from the media and friends who were there. This time around, I was there for myself with a couple of friends. Of course, we've all heard about the horror stories about teargas and water cannons, and just days before Bersih 4 was going to happen the police mentioned something about 'taser guns'. I believe many of us managed our expectations and prepared for the worst - educating ourselves with information such as what to do when there's teargas and perhaps even to the point of memorising phone numbers in case we got arrested.

This time around, the rally lasts for 2 days. On Saturday, hundreds were already gathering on the streets of Kuala Lumpur when we arrived around 10am-ish. People were already making their presence felt. 

More and more people spilled the roads by noon and were waiting for the rally to officially start at 2pm. Before that, we were just walking around and had a light lunch at Old Town inside Central Market. 

Approaching 2pm, more and more were gathered and everyone is already chanting and blowing their vuvuzela if they have one. Police were there to assist the traffic too because buses were operating as usual.

It's funny we didn't dare get so close to Dataran Merdeka (the hot spot) and decided to park ourselves further back in the middle of the long Jalan Tun Perak but it just so happen that the place we were seated at was another meeting spot which we didn't know of. I take it as it is destined for us to get so close and we were able to listen to the speakers most of the time although the sound system was not at its best.

We stayed until around 5.30pm and this was my final view of the crowd on Saturday. A lot of people left but there were quite a number of people who were also making their way down town. 

Coming back home, after being disconnected from the Internet for a few hours, I keep updated with what was going on through social media updates. I was encouraged to see that the crowd was persevering, which is not something easy for us as most of the rally-goers, I assume, are pampered urbanites who live life rather comfortably. It's some sort of achievement that we're proud of haha. It's some sort of sacrifice that people are learning to make. One step at a time. And even when it rained on Sunday afternoon, their semangat didn't drizzle out.

It was a last minute decision but last night, I was there again. This time, we went closer to the main stage at Dataran Merdeka. We spent about 2 hours chilling in front of Swiss Hotel as the roads were packed as people was waiting to countdown and the closing of the the rally.

The atmosphere was the same. Everyone is excited for the closing moments - singing Negaraku with thousands and thousands of fellow Malaysians. We embraced the beautiful moment as long as we can, and quickly dispersed after the national song was sung. Still, the spirits were soaring high, and we continued chanting as we part ways with faces that we may not remember seeing..

A summary of my thoughts for the whole rally:

1. It was peaceful. The atmosphere was carnival-like. People are walking on the streets freely - chanting, singing or just observing. Of course, there is bound to be troublemakers. At the first day, even before the rally started someone shouted "pencuri, pencuri" and I saw this dude running like he was jogging and even had the guts to look back and see if anyone was catching him. Eventually another uncle stopped anyone from chasing the thief, not allowing the thief to disrupt the peaceful environment. Another was towards the end of the rally yesterday when someone lit a firework and injured 4 innocent people. That's inhumane and simply evil but thankfully everything was under control and the person responsible was caught.

2. Where were the Malays? Don't get me wrong. I am dead curious about this. I know some common replies to this question was to say that "You should see it as Malaysians, not by race" and that "Nobody has the right to criticize who did not come just because you did". Or other reasons like PAS did not attend or that they went on holiday. Still, these reasons do not justify the numbers for me. The simple reason why is because Malays make up more than 60 percent of the demographics in Malaysia. We, Malaysians of all races, must understand that for us to achieve the demands of Bersih such as electoral reform and a transparent government, we need everyone to be part of it and that includes the ones that make up the biggest demographic in Malaysia. Which is why I have raised the question as I want to dig deep into the truth, ask friends who did not come for the rally - hey, why weren't you here? As to why no one bats an eye when Malays made up more than half of the rally-goers in the past Bersih rallies? It's only logical and obvious because Malays have that kind of population, and that is why some people like me are wondering... so... what changed? I only want to know and I have no interest in calling others cowards for not joining. In fact, I have plenty of friends from all races who stayed at home for many different reasons. I only want to know. I want to understand. So please, don't get me wrong. As Wong Chin-Huat puts it: "Will I blame our Malay friends who don't join us? Of course no. Everyone has every right to want the country to be cleaner, freer and more democratic. That needs not have anything to do with ethnicity or religion."

3. I really dislike some acts by the Opposition that are rather insensitive such as speaking in Chinese dialects. I understand that most of the participants of this rally this time comes from the Chinese but as leaders they should know better. Rally-goers have a lot to learn too, such as singing songs in Cantonese and Mandarin. We want to do something that can involve everyone and that is possible. This is why I always believe that every Malaysian, no matter how terrible, can use Bahasa to communicate because it is the common language that every Malaysian should share.

4. More to do after this. When people ask me why am I there for my answer is simple: I just want to tunjuk perasaan. I think the government has gotten a clear message that a lot of urbanites have enough of all the BS and want better governance, more accountability. Of course, things are not going to change overnight. I think most of us get that. But there is power in numbers. Each person who believes in the demands on Bersih, whether they were there at the rally or not, will feel encouraged to know that they are not alone and they can fight along together. Each of us has a part to do. If we want to stop corruption, all levels must stop even from the lowest levels. Yes, that includes us not trying to bribe the policeman after we made an offence. 

Thing are going to be "back to normal" when tomorrow comes. But for each and everyone of us who have lived the moment, whether you are part of the rally or not, we have witnessed a historic moment. And there is more to come.

Selamat Hari Merdeka, Malaysia.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Food: Aether Cafe, TTDI

A few weeks ago, instead of working from the office, my team decided to work from a cafe instead. And the place chosen was Aether Cafe at TTDI.

It's a lovely place and a rather secluded one. In fact it's actually inside this building called Pusat Kanak-Kanak Tuanku Bainun.

Parking is quite easy and there seems to be enough as there isn't a crowd here. In fact, for the whole day I've counted there's probably less than 20 different sets of customers.

I spent the whole day there, literally for 10 hours because after my colleagues left, I was still stranded since I didn't drive and was waiting to have dinner with friends.

Food and drinks are limited and probably not even worth it (overpriced), but Aether Cafe makes no attempt to convince you that it's good either. I can foresee the reason people will be here is for the ambiance and that's what you will be paying for here. The tranquility found here is unparalleled.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Review: Mi Redmi 2 Enhanced 2GB RAM 16GB Malaysia (First Impressions)


Me being me, clumsy as ever, I managed to spoil my Motorola Moto G after about 1.5 years of usage. Actually, it's working perfectly except for the cracked screen. The thing is, it will cost me about RM250 to fix the LCD and I was contemplating if it was worth it because seriously, ask everyone around me - I love my Moto G. I also went to test market and see if anyone would still want a broken phone and lo and behold - I received several offers ranging from RM80-RM100. Not bad for a broken phone LOL.

Anyhows, I decided to surf the market a bit and find something within my budget. I don't believe in spending money to buy any flagships because I am not in need of one. And finally, I settled for the Redmi 2 Enhanced. The Redmi 2 Enhanced came on time as it was just launched about less than 2 weeks ago.

I got the Redmi 2 Enhanced directly from Mi Malaysia store at RM459, which is rather a good price and about how much I wanted to spend on a phone, or less. I also top up RM39 to get a 10400 mAh powerbank for my aunt.

Basically, the "Enhanced" version has an upgrade in RAM and internal storage than the Redmi 2 (older version). Specs wise, I have an upgrade from my Moto G in terms of RAM and camera, and oh a different processor.

First look! It's a phone at a size I like - at 4.7" HP IPS Display.

Basically in the box it's the common stuff you get. The phone itself, the battery, a USB cable and a charger. Nope, no documentation. I'm yet again disappointed with the charger that Mi provides. 1A only? Please. I just kept the USB cable and charger inside the box since I've resorted to continue using my OEM 2A charger to charge the Redmi 2 Enhanced now.

I don't really like the positioning of the sim card slots and the microsd card as I have to remove the battery pack first in order to remove the sim card(s). Since the battery in Moto G is not removable, the location of the sim cards were at a different sides and it indirectly made it more convenient for the user to remove or insert sim cards.

Out of the box, the Redmi 2 Enhanced has the latest MIUI software. And after I finish loading the whole phone I was prompted to get the latest update to Not bad.

Size comparison with the Moto G, it's a little longer but I still like the feel of it in my hands. The Moto G is a little beefier and nicer to hold but Redmi 2 Enhanced is not bad either but I have to be more careful since I'm a clumsy person. Heh.

First impressions:
1. I was a little skeptical about MIUI 6 but it's not bad. On my Moto G with the Lollipop update, I cannot silent my phone and have vibrate so I love it that I have it here on the Redmi 2 Enhanced. Also, when I silent my phone on the Moto G, the alarm won't sound but it will work on the Redmi.

2. I love the camera.

3. I've been playing Injustice: Gods Among Us and it's without any apparent lag. No crashes so far (unlike on my Moto G). Phone gets hot real quick, but at bearable heat.

4. It takes about 2 hours to fully charge the Redmi from 15% using the OEM charger (output 1V/2A)

Looking forward to using this phone and praying really hard that I stop being so clumsy. Haha.