Phone Notifications

tl;drAndroid notification settings is less controllable than that of Windows Phone

Back in 2014, I bought my first smartphone, a Nokia Lumia 1020, powered by Windows Phone 8 (if you didn’t count Nokia E72 with Symbian S60v3 as a smartphone). Windows Phone 8 have notification features, but it was just a toast and will be gone after a while. So, the way to check your phone real “notifications” is to go into each of the apps to check for updates (but it will be indicated at apps’ Live Tile). It was not long before my phone OS was upgraded into Windows Phone 8.1, where the toast notifications are collected at Notification Center until it was dismissed by the user.

But I was not a fan of notification.


It’s the time of year where I apply kaizen: To stop, reflect, and continuously improve.

I’m scared of the future. It seemed so uncertain and scary out there. Meanwhile, my days in university is numbered. I couldn’t start it with positivism and optimism like what I did in my 17th, where after reading it back, I laughed at myself 😃 Many things have changed but some things will not. I saw my wishes from my 18th birthday, I felt that I did fulfilled all of them already by this age: improved designing skill (check; hey, back then, my designing skill was really bad); improved public speaking (partial check; I think co-presented a presentation during international conference counts? hahaha); built personal website (check; it was a mini-resume now, with few side projects hosted on it). …

8 October 2014

9 October 2014

It was my 19th birthday.

The day itself was just a normal Wednesday, until I was surprised by my friends for a birthday celebration. Well, technically the Facebook event for this surprise shows up in my News Feed, which was surprising. After that, expecting they will celebrate at night, I just kept myself busy with many things, waiting for them to come :P although I tried my best for not knowing the event, to make them happy.

I woke up at 7, having prepared for the day, I went to CZ2002 lab. The lab itself was not so complicated and I managed to finished it in an hour. Going back, I took a short nap first before “fixing” the problem with my Surface, in which after I “refresh” it, it wouldn’t run Windows Update. In the meantime, I played Bejeweled 3, free full game from Origin. Besides that, I received many birthday greetings already and I start to thank them one by one.

After lunch at Canteen 1, I continued doing these stuffs until I went to HW0210 tutorial which talked about writing conclusion and recommendation, and abstract. After the tutorial, our group went to a TR (chopped one of course) for a meeting, discussing about the current state of the report. In the end of the meeting, they greeted me a happy birthday. Going back after dinner at Canteen A, I did my laundry, cleaned up my room, fixed my Surface problem, revised my part of HW0210 report, and then continued playing game. I also received an email from the past me, that is written on May 2014, wishing myself a happy birthday and reminding me about the status of my goals I’ve set earlier this year. In the end, I watched Magic Kaito first before going to bed (although I knew that they are coming).

Just right after I went to bed, they actually came and “surprised” me. I was greeted by a cake in front of the door by Alwyn and Chun Wah. :) Then, they took me to the bus stop where everyone else were waiting. Woah, a lot of people were there. They sung happy birthday, I cut the cake, we all ate the cake, did chit-chat, and finally took photos. I received a lot (read: A LOT) of birthday greetings here from my friends and received a birthday card (and gift) from NTUBS Fellowship team :) Yay, it was a little minion.


Usually people do resolutions on New Year, but I do it on birthday. So, this year’s resolution is:

  • Actively writing this blog. At least covers the story of every week of my life, preferably to publish every weekends.
  • Do more side projects and have more ideas. I should do a big side projects (the one like “Raun” is big enough for me) during holidays, and in the non-holiday period, think of project ideas. Besides that, I would also like to learn new tech stuffs, like learning Rust, Node.js, or mobile app development; and to make full use of my devices (laptop, tablet, and phone) in doing the projects.
  • Be more strict on schedule, especially sleeping time and waking-up time, and don’t waste time in procrastinating, always have something productive to do if I’m not resting.

On the side note, I would also like to enhance my public speaking skill, interview skill, and English skill. This is because I realize that I’m sucks at those things and would like to further improve them.

I hope that those all can be achieved by next year’s birthday.

May all be well and happy,


The Meaning of Life

13 April 2014

On 4 May 2014, I viewed an interesting video about the meaning of life. Watch it here: http://sivers.org/ml

Brief summary of the video

The author explained some philosopher’s view and argument about the definition of life, such as:

  1. life is time
  2. life is choice
  3. life is memory
  4. life is learning

and the author mentioned some other definition, until he mentioned about his experience in learning Chinese character, where he inferred that every character must have a meaning in the pictograph, but after his search at dictionaries, he concludes that some of the characters have no meaning in the pictograph and just chosen because of how it sounds. He states that human are very fond of pattern finding that they just cannot accept things that are random. Hence, he concludes that life has no meaning at all in the first place. It’s just random. Accept it. End of story.

Life is Suffering?

Disclaimer: all the statement written here is not yet confirmed to be true; I just voiced out my opinion based on what I’ve already known (mainly from attending many sessions of NTUBS Dhamma Classes, and BF Sunday Services)

The author also mentions about meaning of life, according to Buddhism:

Should we look at the Buddhist idea that life is SUFFERING? Nah, that’s no fun.

Well, I laughed at the author’s joke of life being “no fun”, although I know that he misinterpret the first noble truth of The Four Noble Truths. Simply put, if “life is suffering” is true, do you feel like suffering right now?

In Buddhism, the Buddha gave the first sermon about The Four Noble Truths at Deer Park around 3 months after his enlightenment. He taught about the Four Noble Truths to his first five disciples. This Four Noble Truths consists of:

  • the truth of suffering
  • the truth of the cause of suffering
  • the truth of the cessation of suffering
  • the truth of the ways leading to the cessation of suffering

This first noble truth, as quoted from the sutta (scriptures), is this:

Suffering, as a noble truth, is this: Birth is suffering, aging is suffering, sickness is suffering, death is suffering, sorrow and lamentation, pain, grief and despair are suffering; association with the loathed is suffering, dissociation from the loved is suffering, not to get what one wants is suffering — in short, suffering is the five categories of clinging objects.

From the quote, we can infer that those 8 conditions are called suffering, but those 8 conditions did not make up “life is suffering”.

Suffering, is part of human’s life, but unnecessarily is the human’s life. Rather than stating that life is suffering, for me, it really means that the thing called suffering exists in this life, and identifying it is important in Buddhism.

Why Buddhism is all about suffering?

Instead of that, what is true happiness?

To answer this question, the Buddha’s approach to see the other side first, suffering. Because not suffering is true happiness, and true happiness is indescribable. Hence, he taught the four noble truth: the description of suffering; the cause of suffering; the end of suffering; and the ways to the end of suffering. Hence, those thinking about everything about Buddhism is about suffering is false, Buddhism is about happiness, but to achieve it, the Buddha do it this way:

  • identifying the opposite of happiness;
  • knowing the cause of the opposite of happiness;
  • knowing that there is happiness;
  • practicing the way leading to happiness.

Finally, back to meaning of life:

Well, I couldn’t agree more with the author’s view that life, like many other things, have no real meaning from its first creation. Everyone can put their own meaning to life and hence there is no correct answer to “what is the meaning of life”.

Happy Vesak Day. May all the beings be well and happy. :)


See also

My blog post on Vesak Day of 2012, and Vesak Day of 2013.

2013 in Review

31 December 2013

Many things happened in 2013, just like in 2012. The following lists what have happened to me in 2013:

Here comes the end of 2013, happy new year 2014. This blog is never been this crowded before. Thank you for being an audience of my stories. May the blog be filled with more posts in terms of quantity and quality.

P.S. see my year in review from Facebook.